Paul Gallen says Justis Huni was “disrespectful” and “extremely arrogant” for his controversial approach to his Olympics preparation, a strategy which ultimately ruled him out for the upcoming Tokyo Games.
Last week, Huni announced he would not be departing for Tokyo after aggravating an existing hand injury in his TKO win over Paul Gallen, dashing his Olympic dream before it had a chance to get off the ground.
Gallen had quipped before the fight that he intended to ruin Huni’s Olympic dreams when they clashed for the heavyweight title.
“They’re overlooking me, without a doubt. Their No.1 concern is the Olympics … well, I’m here to tell all of you, Justis, you included and your team: I’m here to do everything I can to make sure you don’t go to the Olympics,” Gallen said.
“That dream, since you’ve been seven years old, is gonna be f–ked. You’re lucky there’s a referee in there, I’m gonna do everything I can to break something in there. I’m gonna break something in there.”
While Gallen’s comments were nothing more than innocuous pre-fight bravado, it still begs the question why Huni’s camp would have accepted any risk so close to the upcoming games.
But as the dust settles on Huni’s shock omission, Gallen has served the young Australian Heavyweight a reality check over his cavalier approach to his now-thwarted Olympics campaign, which included two fights within six weeks of the Games.
“I respect and like Justis, but what he did was disrespectful to the sport and extremely arrogant,” Gallen told WWOS Radio on 2GB.
“To have those two fights leading into an Olympic Games, it’s not my fault, it’s his fault. And I refuse to take blame for it.
“I do feel sorry for him but I’m not going to feel bad about it because he shouldn’t have been having those types of fights a month before the Olympic games, he shouldn’t have done it.
“It was his dream to go to the Olympics from when he was seven years of age, he had that opportunity, and now he’s only got himself to blame.”
Huni suffered the initial hand ligament injury in the weeks leading up to his fight with Christian Tsoye, a whole three weeks before his fight with Gallen.
He aggravated the same injury in the opening rounds of his fight against Gallen and will be forced to undergo surgery.
Gallen’s family urges NRL legend to quit boxing
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