EastSideBoxing Countdown to Pacquiao vs Bradley: UPSET or SETUP?
By Vivek Wallace: Seems any time you here the name Floyd Mayweather, you hear the name Manny Pacquiao, and vice versa. Anywhere and everywhere you look in the sport one name seems synonymous with the other, and a quick glimpse down the list of pending headliners tells us that the Summer of 2012 will be no different. Only two weeks ago we watched as Floyd Mayweather showed a side many didn't know he still possessed; and in 3 weeks from now, Pacquiao will attempt to show us why he should be regarded as the best. Standing in his way is a man that few outside the hardcore circle know.....but if the past is any indication, that could soon all change.
As we draw closer to the showdown between Timothy "Desert Storm" Bradley and Manny "Pac-Man" Pacquiao it seems so many subplots have found center stage that the men themselves have barely needed to promote. The intriguing thing about the unusually high volume of subplots to gain headlines lately is that they've all fallen to one side, as Pacquiao finds himself in a "fight" before the fight, (based on recent comments made); while Bradley has had nothing whatsoever to distract him from the mission at hand.
When we look at the major distractions on one end and the level of dedication and determination on the other, the operative question becomes a tale of two words which contain the same letters in the beginning, yet result in two totally different outcomes in the end. At this stage it's any ones guess whether or not this is an "UPSET" in the making; or simply a "SETUP", providing leverage for the fight we all actually wanted to see? On the surface the resumes pale in comparison, leading some critics to say Bradley doesn't even rate to share the same ring as the Filipino warrior. A closer glimpse at the man behind that modest resume tells us that if anyone could make the most of a shot you didn't think he should get, it's the precise man who lucked up and finally got!
In the words of HBO's Jim Lampley, "Timothy Bradley isn't great at anything.....but he's very good at everything"! Never quite known as a defensive wizard, yet very deft at slipping punches. Only 12KO's in almost 30 professional bouts, yet known to halt forward progress and good for wobbling his man atleast one good time over the course of 12 rounds. Of all the things he isn't known for yet has found a way to prove, this particular fight will bring into question a certain attribute that will undoubtedly go a long way in determining how successful he is at the end of the night. That attribute: Durability of chin.
We know that Pacquiao can handle his 'heat', but can Bradley remain cool in the midst of Manny's storm? Although he has defeated a hand full of highly notable contenders, he overcame arguably his greatest obstacle to date by seizing victory from the jaws of defeat on another mans turf. On May 10th of 2008, Bradley crossed the pond as a relatively unknown contender, small in stature, yet big in heart. A slow start made it appear he was on his way to a first career loss until a thunderous shot in the 3rd seemed to wake the American fighter up. He would sustain a little more damage, but it was a straight left from the southpaw stance that sent him reeling backwards which can be credited for awakening the spirited warrior we see today.
From late in the 6th round throughout the end of the night Bradley would take over, finding a way to cement a victory that seemed all but certain only moments prior to. In the aftermath of that epic night we've seen him buckled, as well as taste the canvas; but compliments of a spirit that simply won't die, every ending saw him stand tall rather than fall. Despite his previous great moments, this one sounds the trumpet for a new beginning. An entry gate which serves as a corridor to the elite.
NO.....he's not the man we wanted to see standing across from Pacquiao. But YES, addressing Pacquiao's critics, he is in fact "slick" and "black".......and to add further suspense.....he's even bald! When we consider the obvious decoy effect, one can't help but wonder if perhaps this was a "Setup"! Or maybe......just maybe......perhaps it could end in an "Upset". With three weeks left until fight night, the stage is setup.....and the odds have began to slowly fall down. Stay tuned. Soon enough we all get to find out!
(Vivek "Vito" Wallace can be reached at [email protected], 954.292.7346, Youtube (Vivek Wallace Boxing Talk), Twitter (VivekWallace747), Skype (Vito-Boxing), and FaceBook).
Article posted on 18.05.2012