Bradley: Pacquiao still has it
LAS VEGAS—After 32 fights, the figure “0” in Timothy Bradley’s ring record is gone. But it hardly mattered to him—he has promised to work his way back to the top.
He may have lost to Manny Pacquiao, but the American felt more like a winner Saturday night, far from the defiant demeanor he exuded the first time they fought.
“No excuses, I lost,” Bradley said. “He’s the better man tonight.”
Bradley then showed his respect for Pacquiao by calling him a true champion. “One of the best fighters ever,” he said.
Bradley said he did his best to try to knock out Pacquiao, “but they [Team Pacquiao] came prepared. He [Pacquiao] still has it.”
But rather than sulk, Bradley said the defeat meant that he still has some things to do and learn.
“I will return to the gym,” he said. “Work some more and be a champion again.
“Firing big shots, that’s the only way [for me to win],” said Bradley, who used Juan Manuel Marquez’s knockout of Pacquiao as blueprint for his fight plan against Pacquiao.
“It’s hard to match him speed for speed,” said Bradley. “He’s very experienced, so I [thought I] should go for the knockout.”
He got the chance in the fourth round, catching Pacquiao with an overhand right that staggered the eight-division world champion.
“He recovered just like that, got his distance and fired right back,” Bradley said.
According to Bradley, Pacquiao’s punching power was still there after the Filipino stunned him twice in the fight. The vicious blows came in the seventh and 10th rounds, when Pacquiao unloaded a flurry of punches as Bradley chose to stay at the ropes.
Though he sustained a sprained right calf, Bradley refused to talk about it or use it as an alibi.
In their first showdown in 2012, Bradley claimed that he bested Pacquiao even with two injured ankles.
Bradley also admitted that he erred in saying that Pacquiao’s killer instinct is gone.
“He fought the greatest fight,” he said. “He went for it. He went for a knockout, he definitely did.”