Bradley: I’m going to outbox Provodnikov
By Eric Thomas: WBO welterweight champion Tim Bradley (29-0, 12 KO’s) seems to be sending mixed messages in talking about his fight tonight against Ruslan Provodnikov (22-1, 15 KO’s) on HBO. For weeks now Bradley has been talking about how he’s going to hurt him and make a statement by fighting the Russian light welterweight in a toe-to-toe battle, but now Bradley is saying he wants to outbox him.
Perhaps Bradley no longer cares about trying to impress boxing fans, and mainly just wants to get the win so he can move forward to bigger fights against Manny Pacquiao, Brandon Rios, and Mike Alvarado.
Bradley said to Fightnews.com “He is going to stand in the middle of the ring. I know exactly how to beat this guy – outbox him.”
So does this mean Bradley is going to put on one of normal boring fights? Not all of Bradley’s fights are what you can call boring, but it’s just hard to remember the last fight that you can an interesting one involving Bradley.
Perhaps Bradley’s fights with Kendall Holt and Lamont Peterson were the ones that were interesting to watch because he didn’t grab as much in those fights and there were few head-butts. But in Bradley’s fights with Manny Pacquiao, Joel Casamayor and Devon Alexander, those were ugly fights to watch because Bradley did not look good in them.
Bradley needs to try and outbox Provodnikov because if he chooses to slug with him it might be a tougher fight than he expects it to be. Bradley isn’t as fast as he was at 140, and he’s easier to hit. If he chooses to stand in front of Provodnikov and trade, it could be a 50-50 fight because Provodnikov won’t stop throwing punches to let Bradley take over.
He’ll keep punching as long as his face holds out. Provodnikov tends to swell up around his eyes, and he suffers a lot of cuts. We’ll likely see that happen tonight, especially with Bradley leading with his head when he throws punches.