Pacquiao-Bradley: Roach Expects A “Possibly Short, Fun, Easy” Fight
By James Slater - The word “easy” seems to have been floated around somewhat in the lead-up to next Saturday’s Manny Pacquiao-Tim Bradley fight. Unbeaten 140-pound champ and current Pound-for-Pounder Bradley said a while back that he genuinely believes he will have an “easy night” against Pac-Man on June 9th. While earlier this week, inside his famous Wild Card gym in L.A, Pac-Man trainer Freddie Roach said he expects a commanding, possibly quick, win to be scored by his star pupil.
A number of boxing experts - former Pac-Man foes Ricky Hatton and Sugar Shane Mosley amongst them - see a long, hard night for both men. And writers such as Dan Rafael says they will not be all that shocked if the man known as “Desert Storm” pulls off the upset next weekend. But Roach, well known for his spot-on accurate pre-fight predictions, says his warrior will definitely win, and win by KO.
“When people get knocked out, there shouldn’t be a rematch,” Roach said, clearly firing back at Bradley’s recent publicity stunt where he had return fight posters made up, with November 10th the date of “the rematch..”
“Manny is in a very good place. We have a big game-plan and we know how to handle this guy. Buboy [Fernandez - Pac-Man’s assistant] feels that Bradley will start to run once he feels Manny’s power but I disagree. I think he doesn’t know how to run and he will be aggressive all night long and Manny’s going to eat him up once he comes forward.
“It could be [a short fight] but he’s [Bradley] a durable guy. It will be fun to watch.”
Bradley really is coming across like a guy who is utterly filled with confidence; and as the old saying goes, he “doesn’t know how to lose.” But we’ve seen in the past what can happen to a guy who comes in too headstrong against Pac-Man (the aforementioned Hatton, for a brutal example). I have a feeling Bradley will indeed do well in the fight, maybe even go the full 12 - if he is careful in the early going. For some reason, I can picture Pacquiao catching Bradley early, maybe in the 1st-round, and winning with an “I’m back to my best” style statement.
We’ve seen Bradley decked and hurt in the early going of a fight before (see his win over Kendall Holt - a guy who didn’t have Pac-Man’s firepower, the kind that would perhaps have got the job done and dusted in that opening session back in April of 2009) and if he comes in too over-excitedly and too aggressively, it could happen again on June 9th.
To my mind, this one will either be decided early or it will be one that goes to the cards. Maybe Pac-Man will indeed score his first stoppage in over three years next Saturday.