Paul Gallen thought Arsene Fosso would want nothing to do with him.
Not after Lucas Browne reneged on a contract to fight the Cameroonian heavyweight in Canberra, instead chasing a payday against Gallen in Wollongong on April 21.
A $100,000 payout from No Limit Boxing meant Browne was able to walk away from a deal to fight Fosso in the capital on April 23.
It robbed promoters of a massive drawcard. It left matchmaker Adam Lovelock fuming, adamant Browne's "word means nothing". Fosso was filthy.
Gallen had no idea. When he found out, the 10-0-1 boxer felt horrible.
Then his phone lit up. It was Fosso with a simple message: "I really want you to beat this guy".
Two heavyweights had found a common enemy. Now after a few sparring sessions inside the Stockade Training Centre, Fosso is adamant Gallen has the tools to beat Browne.
"Of course, of course," Fosso said.
"Browne said he is too strong, but boxing is not just because you're strong. It's mental. You can rock something in your mind first and power comes later.
"[Gallen] is a good boxer. He has good cardio and has good power. Gallen is ready to fight him."
That's the word coming from a legitimate heavyweight boxer, a former amateur world championship medallist whose only loss as a professional came to Australian champion Justis Huni.
Now Gallen wants to build on the relationship and ideally fight on a card featuring Fosso, in the hope he can "get a big pay day and a good fight on a big show".
"I've been watching him for a little while now and I've always wanted to spar him," Gallen said.
"I felt really bad when I found out on social media when talk between me and Browne started. I knew I'd seen [Fosso] before, I knew who he was before that. I'd always wanted to train with him and spar him.
"Then when I found out via social media through Lovelock that he was locked in to fight Browne, and because Browne is renowned for pulling out of fights and stuffing people around, I felt really bad about it.
"I actually didn't think Arsene would come to the party and help me. To his credit, he actually contacted me, he said 'I really want you to beat this guy and I'm happy to help you whenever we can'.
"That's how the relationship started. He's a big strong man who punches hard. I think he's the closest I'm going to get to Browne as far as how big a man he is."
But the relationship goes beyond a level of disdain for former world title holder Browne.
There is another factor at play leading into Fosso's fight on this month's National Boxing Series card against former national champion Faiga 'Django' Opelu.
It's one that revives memories of unlikely professional wrestling factions forming for the greater good.
"We're doing some work with each other because I think Lucas Browne is going to spar with Django," Fosso said.
"That's the news coming to me today. Lucas Browne is going to Queensland to spar with my opponent. Before I was going to fight Lucas Browne, but he wanted to take Gallen."
If all goes to plan for this new heavyweight faction, both may still down Browne.