Sorry, Bradley sees no chance for PacquiaoBy Recah Trinidad
Philippine Daily Inquirer
IT WAS hard to believe at first, but Tim Bradley has started to rate Manny Pacquiao as a so-so opponent.
Bradley, who said he was “always a big fan of Pacquiao,” has downgraded Pacquiao to the point of sounding he would just report to the MGM Grand Las Vegas on June 9 to pick up the world welterweight boxing crown.
“It’s going to be easy work,” Bradley told Brad Cooney of Las Vegas Boxing Examiner over the weekend.
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What caused this boundless optimism?
“My whole style. He’s never faced anyone with my skill, with my determination, with my strengths in his whole career,” Bradley explained.
Anyway, Cooney said that Bradley could be heard chanting “Easy work” while working out.
It was so uproarious, writer Cooney said, it sounded like a boast, “an obvious dig at how well he is going to be able to handle Pacquiao.”
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Truth is that Bradley won’t be caught crying out this loud, say, two or three years ago.
“But today, there’s a lot more on his (Pacquiao) plate, what he does for his country, and balancing boxing, the whole celebrity status,” Bradley noted. “It’s a lot of people pulling at his coattails, so it can be draining at times.”
Bradley noted how Pacquiao slipped in his two previous fights, against Shane Mosley and Juan Manuel Marquez last year.
Bradley said Pacquiao used to dominate before 2011.
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“I think it’s probably lack of motivation,” Bradley said. “I’m not sure. It could be wear and tear.”
Pacquiao did complain about poor legs in the homestretch of those two fights.
Maybe this need not be told, but Pacquiao canceled a scheduled long jog around Burnham Park last Saturday.
One team insider said it was all a case of cramps.
Or it could be something more serious, like wear and tear gnawing at his overworked limbs?
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Just the same, Pacquiao on Saturday afternoon displayed tremendous speed, sharpness and power in sparring against a bigger Russian aspirant.
“No, I’m not saying Pacquiao is going to lay down or whatever,” Bradley continued. “But I just think that what I bring to the ring, I think it’s going to be extremely hard for him… I think with my style alone, my ability and my way to be able to adjust in the ring, I think that’s going to be a handful.”
Is that all?
“On top of that, you’ve got my speed, you got my power, you got my determination on top of that,” Bradley said. “I’m younger, have less miles on my body. I’m very smart. I have captured three world championships. Manny Pacquiao is human just like I am. He bleeds just like I do.”
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Before trainer Eric Ariza left the Pacquiao camp in Baguio, he expressed the wish that Pacquiao’s extra-curricular commitments won’t come in the way again.
Trainer Freddie Roach next assured that Pacquiao will never be lacking in other commitments.
But this new one, the Bible and his deep devotion to God, has been the most dominant factor in Pacquiao’s life and career.
“Call it whatever, but his devotion has worked wonders for our camp. He always checks in early now,” Roach confided.
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For his part, the best Pacquiao could say was that he would be in his old devastating form come June 9 against Bradley.
Will it be the magical, tempestuous Pacific Storm once again?
Pacquiao did not say, but quickly added that “in boxing, it should not be personal.”
He said he knows Bradley will be more than ready.
“He’s there to hurt me,” Pacquiao explained. “But he should also be ready to take my punches and get hurt, too.”
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