Keith Thurman: Once I get Bradley in the ring it’s all over for him
By Dan Ambrose: Unbeaten #1 WBO mandatory challenger Keith Thurman (20-0, 18 KO’s) says he’s going to finish off WBO welterweight champion Tim Bradley (30-0, 12 KO’s) when the two of them meet in the future if Bradley doesn’t get beaten in his next fight by one of promoter Bob Arum’s Top Rank fighters Manny Pacquiao, Juan Manuel Marquez, Brandon Rios or Mike Alvarado.
Thurman saw Bradley’s recent 12 round decision win over Ruslan Provodnikov and he feels that Bradley is quite fortunate that he was in the ring with the 5’7” Provodikov rather than himself because he thinks he would have destroyed Bradley had he hurt him the way that Provodnikov did.
Thurman said to RingTV “Tim Bradley was lucky that he wasn’t fighting me that fight…that would have been one of the easiest nights to grab a belt…As soon as I get my hands on him, it’s over.”
As poor as Bradley has looked in his last two fights you’d have to agree with the 24-year-old Thurman. He hits too hard and he’s too big for Bradley. Although Bradley is now a fairly heavy welterweight, he’s still more of a light welterweight in terms of power. There are lightweights with better power than Bradley, and he’d have major problems against the 5’9” Thurman. That would be a really tough fight for Bradley.
If Bradley doesn’t get beaten in his next fight, he’s likely going to have to defend his WBO title against Thurman unless Arum is able to get the World Boxing Association to let Bradley put off his mandatory defense for a little while longer so that he can fight other Top Rank stable fighters.
As far as Thurman goes, he’s got to win his next fight against WBA welterweight interim champion Diego Chaves (22-0, 18 KO’s) this summer.
Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer is putting on a doubleheader on Showtime on July 20th or 27th pitting Thurman vs. Chaves and Andre Berto vs. Jesus Soto-Karass.
The fact that Golden Boy is maneuvering Thurman to take the Chaves fight suggests that they’re not going to bother having Thurman wait for the Bradley fight. Instead, Thurman would then be in line to face the winner of the June 22nd fight between WBA welterweight champion Paulie Malignaggi and Adrien Broner.
I think Broner will win the fight, but then vacate the title rather than facing the bigger and arguably stronger Thurman. In that case we’d see Thurman face the next contender in line, and that would be #2 WBA Marcos Maidana for the vacant WBA title. Maidana already turned down a fight with Thurman in the past, so it’s possible he could turn it down again. If so, Thurman might end up fighting #3 WBA Ed Paredes for the WBA title.
Thurman might actually hurt Bradley if that fight were to be made right now because Bradley suffered a concussion in his win over Provodnikov and there’s no telling if he’ll continue to have problems when he fights again. Putting him in with a puncher like Thurman night end up with Bradley getting knocked out in one or two rounds.
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