Marquez vs Bradley? Oh, well …By Sev Sarmenta
Philippine Daily Inquirer
SO THE fights we want to see are not going to happen.
The road to revenge for Manny Pacquiao looks like it won’t happen soon as Timothy Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez didn’t bite Bob Arum’s offers and decided to fight each other in September at the Thomas and Mack venue in Las Vegas.
Money talks loud and clear in professional sports and Bradley and Marquez can hedge all they want to get the prize money they like.
Bradley, whose win over Pacquiao was not decisive and was controversial at best, probably feels he’s on top of the world and deserves a better pay day against the man he supposedly beat.
The way fighters think is that they’ll risk a loss against a higher-rated, stronger or more popular fighter to go home with a reasonable purse that will make all the effort worth it.
Talking about Marquez, let’s think like fight fans and suspend momentarily our passion for Pacquiao. If you’re Marquez, you want to end the duel the way it ended in the fourth installment: A ferocious sixth-round wallop that floored Pacquiao.
It was precise, decisive and all in the flow of the fight. Marquez wants people to remember that knockout for all time.
The “lucky” part of that punch was that it came when Marquez needed it the most to get out of the predicament he was in. If there was at least one more full minute left in that round, Pacquiao would have finished off Marquez.
Despite all its emphasis on precision, timing and accuracy, boxing also has moments for unexpected lightning bolts. The “lucky” punch tag seems more like something you hear at ringside in a Filipino weekend fight and was on the lips of every Filipino who felt the pain of Pacquiao’s loss.
Marquez-Bradley? Well, here come the drumbeaters and Pacquiao will be an interesting, albeit unwilling, intervening variable in the mix. The promotion will hinge on the fact that both had conquered Pacquiao and now it’s time to see who is the better fighter.
Pacquiao will be queried endlessly about who he thinks will win and I wouldn’t be surprised if he gives a listless, polite answer.
This is a fight that Marquez should win. He may not do it that easily because of the age factor but he is definitely stronger now and his confidence is at such a high level even if the Pacquiao conquest seems like a long time ago. A win like that does not leave a conquering warrior that easily.
Bradley may have squeezed out an impossible win against Pacquiao when they met but will not have the same experience and weapons as the Mexican known as El Dinamita.
Marquez is still a superb counterpuncher. He may have not gotten that many big fights because of that tag but the conquest of Pacquiao has changed things even if it is indeed late in Marquez’s career.
We will have to wait again until all these bouts are over and done with before we get the ones we want. Pacquiao-Marquez V will only happen when the money sounds right for Marquez. Pacquiao-Bradley could happen if Bradley manages to beat Marquez.
Pacquiao-Floyd Mayweather Jr.? Well, aren’t we tired of writing and speculating about the possibility of this blockbuster? I really don’t know if it will ever happen.
There are too many financial roadblocks along the way and Mayweather seems to have all the excuses to avoid this fight.
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