Roach: If Bradley gets hit, he’ll fall down
LAS VEGAS—Time and again, Freddie Roach has said that this supposedly “reinvented” Timothy Bradley Jr. will be quite a puzzle to solve for Manny Pacquiao in their welterweight clash Saturday at MGM Grand here.
If he gets hit, Roach said, he’ll revert to the old Bradley Pacquiao dominated in two fights¬—including the first bout which Pacquiao lost by a questioned decision.
This time, Roach has a different idea of how Bradley will react if Pacquiao gets the opportunity to nail him.
“He’ll fall down,” Roach told the Inquirer Tuesday afternoon after a light training session with Pacquiao at Top Rank gym.
The Hall-of-Fame mentor doesn’t believe they’ll see anything new from Bradley on Saturday, even if they took pains to study possible unexpected angles that the American star could throw punches from and how to deal with them.
Bradley told a crowd that gathered at the lobby of MGM Grand during his official welcome that he had been reshaped into a different fighter by new trainer Teddy Atlas and that the surprise that he’ll bring to fight night will be enough to carry him past the eight-division champion.
Told about Bradley’s remarks, Roach shrugged.
“Yeah, sure,” Roach said dryly.
Bradley has stuck to the narrative of his reinvention by Atlas in all of his prefight public appearances, adding that the fact that Atlas had been an analyst on TV gives his corner a fresh take on Pacquiao,
But Roach said he’s never really been impressed by Atlas.
“I mean, who has he trained?” Roach said. “Michael Moorer and that’s it. Bradley’s a great kid and he’s talented but he isn’t going to get anything new from Atlas.”
Roach said Atlas is known for great pep talks and little else.
“What would you rather have? Someone who can say the right things to a fighter or someone who can do the right things for a fighter?”
While he made no predictions about knocking out Bradley, Roach said he is trying to get Pacquiao to go for a victory worth remembering, especially since the Filipino ring icon has hinted that this could be his final bout.
“I told Manny that if this is his last, if he’s going out, he should go out with a bang,” said Roach.