When I called the ’Ghost Dog,’ he was getting ready to take the kids to school. Having two of my own, I could smell the morning ritual in the background and in his tone of parental authority mixed with resignation. Allan Green is a curious player in boxing’s super middleweight division – a weight class that is at once heaven and hell, and even dreadful purgatory, if a fighter isn’t lucky. It wouldn't surprise the boxing community if Green made it into the Super 6 tournament on a fluke and proceeded to run the table, nor would it shock his critics if he lost his upcoming bout with the wild but hard-hitting Aussie, Sakio Bika, in a fight that decides whether Green gets an April shot at fast-rising Andre Ward. The Tulsa native has knockout power in both hands, a devastating left hook that makes for a quick night’s work, and he’s a ring-smart pugilist too: notice the display of patience behind the force when Green took out Carlos De Leon in April 2009. Will 2010 be Allan Green’s breakout year?
Q) Where are you right now and what are you up to? Are you getting ready for Bika?
Actually I just signed my contract. I don’t know what’s going on over on their end. I’ve been training for awhile now because I wasn’t sure if the fight was happening or not. But I just started training – just in case – about five and a half weeks ago. I’m going to camp in Florida in a few days.
Q) How are you feeling right now?
I feel great. I feel good, I feel strong. Like I said, I’ve been training. I’ve been running. I mean, I wasn’t sure if the fight was happening or what.
Q) First tell me where you are with the Super 6. Do people want a fight-off between you and Bika to decide who gets in?
I don’t know if the people wanted that but I guess that’s what the people are getting. I really don’t understand why I have to fight Bika to get in to the tournament in the first place. But it is what it is.
Q) You don’t sound happy about that.
No, because it was said that if anything happened, I would automatically go in to the tournament and all of a sudden I hear I have to fight this guy Sakio Bika just to make it to the tournament. Jermaine got knocked out and he got to fight in the tournament. So I don’t get that. It didn’t add up to me.
Q) If you have to fight Bika how do you feel you match up to him?
He doesn’t really concern me. He’s a strong guy. He’s a very strong guy – he doesn’t have any boxing skills at all – but he’s very strong and very wild. A guy like that can give you a lot of problems. I mean, none of the guys in the tournament ever fought him.
Q) What do you think of Jermain’s decision to take himself out of the Super 6?
I don’t think he should have been in the tournament in the first place. He got knocked out the fight before the tournament. I won my fight. He got knocked out. I don’t see how you reward a guy for losing a fight by putting him in the Super 6. He’s no longer super. He got knocked out.
Q) Do you think Jermain should come back and fight after taking a rest or do you think his career is over?
Personally, I don’t think Jermain should fight again. I wouldn’t like to see the guy get hurt or anything. He’s been knocked out three times now. He got knocked out three times in a row – two brutal knock outs in a row. He should probably call it a day.
Q) If you enter you have to face Ward straight away. What are your thoughts about facing him after what we saw Ward do to Kessler?
I never really thought much about Kessler. Ward is a good fighter. He’s tricky. He’s foxy, but he poses no threat to me at all. He’s a good fighter, but I don’t worry about him at all. I know I can take
Q) After watching stage 1 of the tournament who do you think would be your biggest threat?
It’s hard to say. A lot of people sleep on Carl Froch but you know he fights better – regardless of what people say about Kessler and Abraham – I think Froch fights better than Kessler and Abraham. I think he’s very determined. But I don’t know. I don’t know who poses the biggest threat, I really can’t say.
Q) Dirrell/Froch: What did you think?
I thought Froch won by two points. I don’t understand why people made a big deal about it. Dirrell’s style looks good. It’s visually impacting with a lot of his moves and the speed, but Froch, as far as the actually fight…he won the fight.
Q) People were impressed by how Abraham took out Taylor. Given what you said earlier I imagine you don’t think much of that victory.
Carl Froch just knocked him out so why would I be impressed with that? I mean, anyone that would have fought Jermain Taylor, probably except for Ward because Ward’s not really a puncher, they probably would have knocked him out.
Q) Has your toughest fight so far been with Miranda?
Given my condition, I would say yes.
Q) What did you learn from that fight? I mean, you had to have surgery to remove 80% of your colon…
Yeah, 85%. I just learned never to take a fight in that kind of condition.
Q) Did you know something was wrong with you before or after the Miranda fight?
I knew something was wrong. I did know. But I knew I had to have surgery afterwards.
Q) So you weren’t 100% for the Miranda fight?
Oh my God I was about 30 or 40% I wasn’t 100% at all.
Q) What did the doctor say you had?
I had a thing called colonic inertia. Mine was actually worse than that. My colon was basically paralyzed. It was dead. I couldn’t absorb water. I couldn’t absorb anything. I was just messed up.
Q) How has recovery been? Have the doctors given you an all clear?
Yeah, I feel great.
Q) Who is your favorite fighter of all time?
Q) How come?
Because he’s the greatest fighter ever…the closest thing to perfect you’ll ever see in a fighter. He didn’t have any weaknesses. He could fight. He could box. He knew how to calculate the right kind of fight. He’s just a beautiful fighter. And he had heart.
Q) Who has hit you the hardest in a boxing match to date?
People will trip out when I tell them this. Jerson Ravelo.
Q) Was your fight against Codrington your most impressive stoppage?
Actually my favorite fight…I liked it when I fought Anthony Bonsante.
Q) If you could fight anyone not fighting today, who would you most want
to prove yourself against?
It would have to be Marvin Hagler or Ray Leonard.
Q) What are your thoughts on business side of boxing?
I hate it.
Q) Worse than ever? Same as before?
Worse than ever. I hate it.
Q) What do you make of the Floyd and Manny fiasco…was Floyd scared?
Floyd should just be a man. I mean, I’ve never put Floyd in a class as being one of the greats anyway. I think he’s a great fighter, but there are a lot of fights he should have fought. He’s never fought a fight where a guy has had a chance to beat him. I don’t like to call another man scared, but I think he’s very worried about Manny Pacquiao.
Q) Do you think there’s something behind Manny and the HGH controversy?
No, and even if there was, how would he know about it? What would all of a sudden make you say I’m not fighting him? That means there’s something that you saw that intimidates you. If that’s the case, people could have said that about Duran when he was in his prime. They didn’t.
Q) During the 2002 Golden Gloves you beat Mike Tyson's two decade old 8 second knockout record. Who did you KO?
Tommy Crupe. He was from Michigan.
Q) Where did the name ‘Ghost Dog’ come from?
My brother Pepe gave me that name. When you’re in the ring and you say you ‘dog somebody,’ you jump on them and you dog them. Now getting ‘Ghost’ would have been about the moment he tried to retaliate. I got out the way and was out of sight real quick. That’s the ‘ghost dog’ and I do that a lot, especially in the gym, so he gave me that nickname.
Q) People also call you ‘Sweetness…’
Sugar Ray Leonard. I used to be signed with him, and he gave me that nickname after one of my fights.
Q) Chad Dawson. You called him out in the past…
Here’s the thing. I really have nothing against Chad. He’s a good fighter. I just think the first name that was brought up when they talked about going to super middleweight was my name. That’s what Gary Shaw did, and so I responded in kind. I obliged. I said, hell yeah, I’ll fight him. I wanna fight him. It wasn’t necessarily a call out. But if your promoter is going on record and saying that I’m one of the first names that you are going to fight at super middleweight, then I came out and I said, hell yeah, let’s do it. But I guess they had a change of heart. I guess he’s not going to come down to super middleweight.
Q) People call you a classic fighter. What does that mean to you?
I guess I remind them of the old fighters. I mean, that’s the biggest compliment you can give a fighter. That’s great. That’s a great compliment.