Pacquiao vs. Bradley Predictions

By Boxing News on June 9, 2012
Pacquiao vs. Bradley Predictions
Does a leopard change its spots? We'll find out in a few hours. (Chris Farina/Top Rank)

How will Bradley react when Manny starts landing his southpaw bombs? Will he back off and start to box…

Tonight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, WBO welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao defends his title against undefeated Timothy Bradley. Bradley is more confident than confident can be. He hasn’t yet learned how to lose, that may be coming, and in the early stages of the fight will bring the fight to the Philippine superstar. But how will Bradley react when Manny starts landing his southpaw bombs? Will he back off and start to box, using his young legs to dance circles around his opponent? Or is it true that a leopard doesn’t change its spots? We’ll find out in a matter of hours. Until then, this is how the writers predict Pacquiao vs. Bradley will unfold.

Adam Berlin: “At Wednesday’s BWAA dinner, a number of writers I respect made a good case for Bradley pulling the upset. But the case against him, in the guise of Manny Pacquiao, is too strong. PacMan will buzz the forward-charging Bradley early in the fight, and he’ll continue to inflict damage until he calms the Desert Storm and puts him to sleep. Pacquiao wins by TKO within nine.”

Cheekay Brandon: “Logic says that Manny Pacquiao should steamroll over Timothy Bradley. As I’ve alluded to, I believe Pacquiao is at least a half-class better in pure talent, which translates to Timothy Bradley only having a chance on an off night. Thankfully for Bradley, I expect an off night for Pacquiao, secondary to alleged tension within his own camp and outside-the-ring distractions. I expect Timothy Bradley to put on the performance of a lifetime—to fight smart and aggressive. I expect Manny to be the aggressive battering ram that we know for most of the fight, with periodic episodes of the lost pitter-patter that we recently saw against Juan Manuel Marquez (Nov. 2011). Unfortunately for Bradley, this will be a enough for Pacquiao, as the volume of accurate punches that he throws will win all of the close rounds (as he’s prone to do) en route to a decision victory.”

Mike Casey: “If Pac is still fully tuned in to the fight game—and I think he is too much of a professional not to be—then I think he will win this fight fairly comfortably. Bradley is a deceptively skillful operator and I don’t believe that he will be overwhelmed or brutalized, but I do see Tim losing a unanimous decision. In the meantime, I do wish that Manny would park his politics, his god and his curious obsession with gay people to one side until he hangs up his gloves. Much like actors and other celebrities, boxers do seem to fall off their pedestals a bit when they start preaching to us on other issues. As for Pac vs. Floyd (we wish), I have said all the way down the line that Manny would win that one. Now I’m vacillating a little and wondering whether Floyd will be in the better mental and physical shape when or if the time comes.”

Christian Giudice: “Every great fighter is allowed to have an off-night. A champion (especially the caliber of Pacquiao) has earned that right. Alexis Arguello had his ‘night’ against Jose Luis Ramirez in November 1980, where he was knocked down in the sixth round, and managed to eke out a 10-round split-decision. Yet, two fights later, Arguello returned to win the lightweight crown and all was forgotten. Preparing for a welterweight showdown, Roberto Duran fought a clunker against surfer/boxer Zeferino Gonzalez prior to his first run-in with Sugar Ray Leonard. Few fight fans recognized the version of Hands of Stone who let Gonzalez stick around for 10 rounds. Three fights later, Duran was back on the top of the boxing world. Nobody remembered what happened against Gonzalez. I think the third fight with Marquez will follow that same pattern. Similar to the Arguello and Duran letdowns, Pacquiao looked pedestrian at times against Juan Manuel Marquez in their last bout, and people started to wonder, is the great Pacquiao slipping? I don’t think so. Pacquiao didn’t look great, but he wasn’t outclassed. It’s too early to acknowledge if there is a problem. What was clear against Marquez was that Pacquiao lacked accuracy, fought flat-footed, and used little, if any, head movement. Movement-wise, Pacquiao didn’t move and suffocate Marquez; so when he couldn’t establish that rhythm early in the fight, he was clearly frustrated. My guess is that Marquez has a style that would frustrate Pacquiao every time they face off. However, if Pacquiao settles for the random, off-balance ambushes against Bradley, he may encounter more adversity. But he is too intelligent to not fix the flaws from the Marquez bout. Look for him to set the tone of the fight (which he couldn’t do against Marquez), wear Bradley down, and stop him in the late rounds. The old Pacquiao will emerge once again. “

Mutaurwa Mapondera: “The only way Bradley can win is with a pitch-perfect performance against a slightly diminished Pacquiao. If Pacquiao is not in some way afflicted by distractions/sore calves/training camp drama/religious revelations I see a one-sided decision or maybe even a stoppage for the Filipino icon.”

Norman Marcus: “Manny has a tarnished record now with some fans since he just squeezed by Marquez last fight to keep his title. It seems when you are a superstar like Pacman you always have to surpass your last fight. The crowd wants ‘shock and awe’ all the time from him but sometimes just winning should be enough! Anyway, Manny had an off night against Marquez in November, while Juan fought one of his best fights ever. A win is a win whether it is pretty or not. My pick is a TKO late in the fight for Manny or a UD in his favor. He also has Freddie Roach in his corner which counts for a lot with me. I go with experience and heart over Bradley’s youth and energy. Bradley doesn’t quite have the hitting power of Pacquiao. He is 28-0 but in my opinion is overdue to lose one here.”

Gordon Marino: “Pacquiao wins by a knockout in round eight. Bradley is going to end up standing in front of the Pacman and will get hammered with his straight left.”

David Matthew: “I see the first half of this fight being competitive and fought at a very fast pace. Both men will exert a ton of energy as they have seemingly endless reserves they are able to tap into throughout the course of a 12-round fight. Bradley will have his moments early and will land some eye-catching counterpunches and good body work. However, as Manny adjusts to Bradley’s style, I see him landing his straight left hand often followed by the right hook. Bradley’s will keep him in the fight as he will prove himself to have indeed belonged in the ring with Pacquiao, but I see Manny’s work-rate and punching power wearing Bradley down considerably to the point where, neurologically, he won’t be able to handle the firepower, even though his body might withstand getting hit by a truck. Pacquiao by late round TKO stoppage.”

Matt McGrain: “Bradley is a valid opponent, but Mayweather’s shadow is cast over any prospective opponent as much as Pacquiao’s is over any Mayweather foe. It seems unlikely that Bradley is secretly in Mayweather’s class so barring a general collapse in Pacquiao’s physicality, Manny should win. I suspect that Bradley is too earnest and aggressive to last the distance. The referee rescues him in the tenth.”

Robert Mladinich: “A strong case can be made for both fighters, so I’m going to do what I do best and pick the underdog. I haven’t been very successful with this strategy, but hopefully I’ll get this one right. While the harder punching Pacquiao looks faster and stronger in the 24/7 segments, Bradley might be able to overwhelm with sheer volume. Bradley by decision.”

Ezra Salkin: “Is ‘Desert Storm’ ready for that Monsoon from the Philippines begat by a human mother and named Manny Pacquiao? There’s a lot to like about Bradley. He’s quick, strong, smart, skilled, and possesses the eye of the tiger. The world knows what Manny has and it’s a bag full of terror for opponents, though each time out they seem to delude themselves into thinking otherwise, that they have the answer to the Manny jigsaw. The thing that Bradley doesn’t have is he’s not Juan Manuel Marquez. Guess what? Only Juan Manuel Marquez is Juan Manuel Marquez, and he’s the only one on the planet who’s gone 36 rounds with Manny and maybe the only one blessed with the ring smarts to use that experience and actually learn to adjust to Manny’s style. But even he partook in that same terror at the start of their first battle, and G-d, he’s lucky that the ref and his corner didn’t stop it after the first. If they had, Manny might’ve already been celebrated by this point as the GOAT. Bradley will now get the chance he asked for to taste the shocking experience that is Manny Pacquiao. Like everyone else, including Floyd if he ever gets in the ring with Manny, I don’t he’ll like it. Pacquiao TKO 6.” 

Ted Sares: “Timothy Bradley has never really distinguished himself in the ring. He has foot speed, fast hands, and stamina, but Pac Man has all of that, plus plenty more. Pac has fought a much higher level of opposition and has significantly heavier power. In fact, Bradley is feather-fisted (his last real stoppage win before Casamayor was in 2007 against unknown Nasser Athumani) and that should allow Manny Pacquiao to prevail. Bradley’s last fight was with a totally shot Casamayor. Manny’s last fight was with world class Juan Manuel Marquez. Manny has not suffered a legitimate knockdown in years, while Bradley was decked twice by Kendall Holt in 2009.
Two intangibles:
1) Bradley is a headbutter (he has two TDs and one NC) and if he butts and cuts Manny early, that could be a factor.
2) The possible dissension in Manny’s corner involving Ariza and Roach could detract from Pac’s focus.
On balance, Manny should win by UD or even by possible stoppage.”

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  1. yArHj Cargadno 03:04am, 06/10/2012

    AmMFooO ... what the ... I guess Pacquiao win not Bradley.. coz bradley is just like a stupid ... fighter Pacqiuao..

  2. RJ Sauve 10:34pm, 06/09/2012

    Bradley has never had to deal with a southpaw with Pacquiao’s skill set…so he’ll lose the early rounds just as a result of trying to adapt to his speed, power & accuracy. I wouldn’t be surprised if Pacquiao scores knockdowns early in the fight. My only concern for this fight is Bradley’s tendency to lead with his head risking a cut that could impact an otherwise obvious outcome. I am sure Pacquaio has trained for this tendency & will teach Bradley that leading with his head will cost him points & punishment that he is not used to absorbing.

  3. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo 02:26pm, 06/09/2012

    Tim’s sour mugging is starting to wear thin! There’s a difference between being confident that you can beat the P4P best fighter in the world and being a cranky, disrespectful ingrate…..this is not a mandatory defense after all and thanks to this fight Tim’s family’s quality of life will be secured!

  4. Jason 02:19pm, 06/09/2012

    Well Mike, at least you’re consistent. I stand corrected. Only a quibble, still enjoy reading your stuff.

  5. mikecasey 01:00pm, 06/09/2012

    Yes, Casey would and Casey has over the years - repeatedly.

  6. Jason "Big Right Hands" 12:14pm, 06/09/2012

    Really love how Mike Casey preaches to Manny about preaching to everyone else.

    Manny is entitled to God. You just don’t park that. Would Casey say the same about Muhammad Ali?

  7. Joe 10:41am, 06/09/2012

    Manny TKO Round 10 - but it should be a good show.

  8. The Thresher 06:40am, 06/09/2012


  9. The Thresher 06:39am, 06/09/2012

    The hype (to which I have contributed 4 articles) sickens me, but this is New School and it is what it is.

    In fact, I am giving a speech on this very subject at the Tewksbury, MA Library on Tuesday night at 7:00 PM. as part og Mick Ward Month in Lowell. If anyone is in the area, please come. :)

  10. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo 06:16am, 06/09/2012

    If it’s a power lifting contest I’m taking Tim…but it’s not…it’s a fist fight and it’s the punches you don’t see that get you! Guess what….that’s what Manny specializes in….hard, cracking shots with both hands coming from all angles….talk about being blindsided! I do give Tim major props for best game face tho’!

  11. The Thresher 05:12am, 06/09/2012

    12-1 in favor of Pac-Man. Hmmm

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