To hear Danny Green talk about it, his recent bout with appendicitus depleted him physically enough to scare in him into considering retirement. All that changed when he announced that Antonio Tarver would be the next challenger for his IBO Cruiserweight belt he holds.
The bout takes place in Green’s comfortable environs of the Entertainment Centre in Sydney, Australia where he is a big star. Antonio Tarver is no slouch in filling the villain role as challenger, having a long slog up the chain of amateur and professional ranks while fighting many top contenders and champs to hard won acclaim, but he was last seen putting forth a tubby effort against fringe heavyweight contender Nagy Aguilera, not a recipe for victory against Green who take pride in shaping into top condition for his fights.
Green is something of a curiousity, having a mecurical personality that led to a disqualification against Marcos Beyer and later a bizarre retirement after beating the towering Drew Stipes for the WBA lightheavy belt. yet staging a very active comeback in 2009 before the appendecitus knocked him down for a long count.
If Green recovers his form, it should be back to staging the best boxing of his career at the belated age of 38. If he has not sufficently recovered, Tarver makes for a long shaky night at the office.
Antonio Tarver is no stranger to belated boxing, having a spotty career until his signature highlight for the ages, a booming one punch knockout over Roy Jones. Tarver was 35 yrs old for that bout and been a name ever since in spite of continuing his spotty boxing that currently sees him with a 28-6, 19 KO record, not the sort of shining record expected for a well regarded champion.
A lifelong lightheavyweight, Tarver looked in shape and aggressively on the hunt in his last two bouts in the division against Chad Dawson, but he was slow and his overall ring activity is slowing as well, so the question for the 42 year old Magic Man is, “Does he have anymore?”
The Green Machine has become a sharp operator and possesses a potent right hand to easily match the southpaw Tarver’s best weapon his left hand. In his last outing he took on a prime aged big strong undefeated contender, BJ Flores, and fought a near perfect fight to out hustle and out maneuver him. I favor this version of Green.
Tarver’s forte has always been the rematches where he avenged his losses, but the magic was gone when he rematched Dawson. He has always been vulnerable to being outboxed and he will be giving up a considerable advantage to Green by fighting in Australia. Since neither fighter has ever been stopped before, a Green decision seems almost a forgone conclusion.
I would never completely write off a noted champion like Tarver who will likely be near even odds to win.
GreenWorld can get pretty whacky at times though, and don’t forget, they’ll be fighting upside down. Will he get sucked into The Green Machine topsy turvy parallel boxing world to be dressed up, waxed, and spit out as Green’s newest notch for his gunbelt?
Those of us in the Great North will just have to tune in Wednesday, July 20th to find out what happens at that ungodly time of the morning.