Timothy Bradley: This Is About Me

By Robert Ecksel on June 6, 2012
Timothy Bradley: This Is About Me
Taking the fight to Pacquaio may be the exact wrong strategy (Chris Farina/Top Rank)

“I don’t care if he climbed Mount Everest,” says Bradley. “I don’t care if he’s walking on water. This is about me…”

Saturday night is Timothy Bradley’s opportunity of a lifetime. When the opening bell sounds at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Bradley will be facing a greater fighter than any he has faced in the past. Joel Casamayor, Devon Alexander, Lamont Peterson, Nate Campbell, Kendall Holt and Junior Witter may have been inadequate preparation for the likes of Manny Pacquiao. We shall see. But Tim Bradley is ready, or believes he is ready, for whatever Pacquiao brings.

“I am ready to take the throne,” he says. “I am confident and I am ready to deliver.”

Everyone agrees that Bradley is brimming with confidence. Everyone, however, is not convinced that he’ll be able to deliver as planned, including but not limited to Pacquaio’s trainer Freddie Roach.

“I don’t care what Freddie Roach thinks,” insists Bradley. “He isn’t in the ring fighting for Pacquiao. He can say whatever he wants. I know I am prepared to do what I need to do. I know I come to fight and they know I come to fight. There is no secret to this. In order to beat the champion you’ve got to take it to the champion. We are setting out to win this fight and not sit around and look pretty. I don’t care what Roach says or what Pacquiao says. I am ready to go. I am going to take it to Pacquiao.”

Taking it to Pacquiao sounds great. But if Manny’s trilogy with Juan Manuel Marquez is any indication, taking the fight to the hard-hitting southpaw may be the exact wrong strategy. But the leopard doesn’t change its spots.

“I systematically break guys down. I get in the ring and they say I don’t have any power but then they feel me and feel my strength. As soon as they get hit they want to hold me. The last couple of fights guys have been holding me all night. It makes it hard for me to really get my work in. I break them down and take every punch away from them. Starting with the jab, I take that away then I take the straight left away. Hit them in the body, break them down and apply the pressure. If you’re not hitting hard in there and I don’t feel threatened then I’m going to take it to you.

“Pacquiao hits hard with the right and the left hand so I’ll be able to feel him out in the first round and see what he really has. If he does have some power then I will definitely have to be smarter in there and outbox this guy. But if I don’t feel like he can hurt me then I’m definitely going to step into him to make a fight out of it.”

Most of us would rather see a slam-bam knockdown fight than a grueling chess match; although chess with gloves and three-minute rounds is considerably more exciting than watching men move pawns about a board.

When asked about his game plan going into this fight, Bradley says “I am going in there and doing whatever it takes to win. If it takes infighting, that’s what I’ll do, because Pacquiao doesn’t fight well inside. You look at all his fights—he doesn’t fight well inside. He throws combinations then steps out and comes in on an angle. He doesn’t like to stay there and bang but maybe that’s what they are working on now and take it to me. So we are aware of that. We prepare for the worst. If he comes in to bang, I’ll go to boxing. I am a schooled fighter. I know when to box. I know when to move and I know when to brawl. I just have to put it all together.

“For the last four years I have been studying this guy, looking at this guy, I have admired this guy. This is my time. An opportunity of a lifetime and I’m going to give it 110%. I’m putting it all on the line so you are going to see a great fight… I’m not in there to survive. I’m not in there for a paycheck. I am in there to win.”

Winning is what it’s all about, but Saturday won’t be a walk in the park.

“I don’t care if he climbed Mount Everest. I don’t care if he’s walking on water. This is about me.”

Follow us on Twitter@boxing_com to continue the discussion

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  1. brownred 09:50pm, 06/06/2012

    tim is the headbutt king of boxing, and he mastered the art of headbutting to perfection. this is his punch.this fight could turn really ugly.

  2. procopy 06:01pm, 06/06/2012

    of course Pacman does not fight on the inside. That’s his style. He steps out to pummel his opponents. He does not like to stay there and brush his cheeks with the other guy’s. Bradley uses his head like an extra fist. and I’ve noticed there’s a lot of hugging in many of his fights.

  3. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo 12:45pm, 06/06/2012

    Robert Ecksel-What do Hopkins, Ward, and Bradley have in common…..try this….all three compete at the world class level…..none of the three have world class punching power….all three have adjusted their “technically brilliant” fighting styles accordingly.

  4. Robert Ecksel 08:20am, 06/06/2012

    Bradley’s taking a BIG step up in class. Who wins or loses this bout may depend more on Pacquiao than his opponent.

  5. The Thresher 05:46am, 06/06/2012

    But his resume is not all that compelling.

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