DANIEL Geale and Gennady Golovkin will enter the ring at Madison Square Garden on Sunday week with a mutual respect to go with their mutual self-belief.
In a stark contrast to the trash-talking of his two head-to-heads with outspoken compatriot Anthony Mundine, Geale and his Kazakh middleweight opponent have spent this week complimenting each other on their record and technique.
``He has tremendous power and is very skilled at what he does,'' said Launceston-born Geale.
``He's been able to dominate people, mostly with his footwork and he's fought some pretty good fighters and disposed of them pretty well and the US love him because of that knockout power that he's got.''
However, the 33-year-old is firmly of the belief that Golovkin and his camp are underestimating him.
``They've already written me off, they don't believe I'm going to be able to go two rounds with Golovkin.
``But I'm not going to be standing in front of him letting him do what he wants.
``He's going to be finding it very difficult to be able to catch me and in the mean time if he drops his guard he's going to pay the price.
``I like people telling me you're not going to win because that just drives me to want to prove them wrong.''
German-based Golovkin, whose pro record shows a daunting 26 knockouts from 29 wins, has been in a training camp in Big Bear Lake, California, since late May in preparation for his 11th title defence.
Despite having not fought since a seventh-round knockout of Osumanu Adama on February 1, the 32-year-old told ESPN he had done his homework on his Tasmanian opponent.
``Daniel Geale is a former world champion and this is the toughest fight of my career,'' he said.
Training partner Abel Sanchez agreed that Golovkin was ready.
``Geale boxes a little more [than other opponents],'' Sanchez said. ``We've been very confident of the past opponents running away, but we don't anticipate that from him.
``Hopefully, he will bring out the very best of Gennady. The better he is, the better it will be for Gennady to perform.
``Geale is more accomplished. He has [won unified world titles] and he's the most experienced boxer at the top level that we've fought.
``He has got the most to gain and is on the cusp of being a world champion again.''
Geale has lost two of his 32 pro fights, the second of which also saw his world title claimed by Englishman Darren Barker, but believes there are cracks in the Golovkin armour.
``Golovkin is not going to knock me out, he's going to have to fight 12 rounds with me - 12 hard rounds.
``I have been in those world championship fights later rounds, I have been able to push and dig deep against tough opponents, especially in their backyards when the odds have been stacked against me.
``I have to capitalise on his weaknesses and he hasn't been taken late into fights, he hasn't been tested at this stage yet.
``If you stand in front of him he's going to hit you so at times he doesn't worry about his defence as much as he should and against good fighters he'll pay the price for that.
``My plan is to be more skilful, to make him miss, to frustrate him and to take him where he's never been taken before and I think he's got a bit of a surprise coming.''