Tim Bradley vs. Kell Brook negotiations underway
By Scott Gilfoid: Matchroom Sport promoter Eddie Hearn and Top Rank are in negotiations to try and workout a fight between Hearn’s fighter IBF welterweight title holder Kell Brook (35-0, 24 KOs) and the Top Rank promoted WBO welterweight champ Timothy Bradley (32-1-1, 12 KOs) in a bout for October this year.
I don’t know if it’s possible to get this fight done though, because both guys are difficult to work with. Brook recently insisted on a rematch clause for his contract against Brandon Rios, and that caused the negotiations to fizzle completely. It’s hard to say why Brook felt he needed a rematch clause against a fighter of Rios’ caliber because this should have been someone that he could beat, but the fact that he insisted on the rematch clause kind of tells you where Brook’s confidence level is at.
“Kell wants to fight Bradley,” Hearn said to the dailymail.co.uk. “I had a good meeting with Bob Arum. There are plenty of names available but we would like to fight Bradley. Of course we would like to fight Amir Khan, but outside of that fight, this is the best one for us. Style-wise it would be an absolute belter.”
Bradley just had his own negotiations go down the toilet when he too attempted to put a fight together with the Top Rank promoted Rios. According to ESPN, the money didn’t work out. Bradley wanted a certain amount and Rios had his own expectations of what he should be getting. Both guys wanted good cash, but it was a fight that wasn’t going to bring in a lot of money given that it wasn’t pay-per-view worthy.
You can understand why Hearn and Brook want to fight Bradley. He can’t punch and he’s already been exposed by Manny Pacquiao, Ruslan Provodnikov, Diego Chaves and Jessie Vargas. Bradley picked up wins against Provodnikov and Vargas, but he was hurt badly in both of the fights. Bradley fought to a 12 round draw against Chaves last year, but he totally collapsed in the 2nd half of the fight under the pressure from the Argentinian Chaves.
Bradley was lucky to get a draw. Last year, Bradley was beaten by Pacquiao by a lopsided 12 round decision in April. Brook has been hurt himself in his fight against Carson Jones in 2012. Brook was also hurt in his fight against Vyacheslav Senchenko. However, Brook has never fought a real big puncher before or anyone with any kind of talent like Shawn Porter, Keith Thurman or Marcos Maidana.
Bradley would have a decent chance of knocking Brook out just by landing his normal shots. Brook has been in with such horrible opposition most of his career that I don’t think he’d be able to take even the punching power of Bradley. Just getting hit a lot, which Brook will have to take against Bradley, will likely be too much for him to deal with when he gets inside the ring with the talented American.
I think this move will backfire on Hearn and Brook in facing Bradley. They must think they can beat him, and then use the victory to come to Amir Khan and basically says ‘See, we beat a good opponent like you asked us to. So now let’s fight.’ Unfortunately, Khan asked Bradley to beat two top caliber fighters, not one.
If Brook beats Bradley, and I don’t think he will, Brook would still need to beat one of the following welterweights before Khan will agree to fight him: Shawn Porter, Marcos Maidana or Keith Thurman. Those guys all have one thing in common and that’s punching power. They are the type of fighters that Brook has never faced before and I don’t expect to face them now.
If Brook beats Bradley, Hearn and Brook will likely start whining and pushing for the Khan fight immediately. They’ll it out in the public and try and exert pressure on Khan to get the fight. If Khan is smart, he’ll ignore the complaining from Brook, and stay on message by saying Brook still needs to fight another high quality contender.
Khan would well to name the guy that Brook needs to pick. Khan can give Brook a choice of three to four fighters, and if Brook refuses to fight one of them, then he can tell him that he blew it by not following his instructions that he gave him. Khan needs to add Errol Spence’s name to the list of Maidana, Porter and Thurman that Brook fights. If Brook decides he doesn’t want to fight one of those big punchers then Khan should put him on ignore and focus on fighting other guys.
Hearn has been matching Brook up softly as of late. We saw Brook defeat one of Hearn’s fighters Frankie Gavin in his last fight and before that the light hitting Jo Jo Dan. The one fighter that Brook beat that was actually a good fighter was Shawn Porter, and Brook beat him by clinching him all night long and not being penalized or warned for his excessive holding.
I personally had Porter winning that fight because he landed more punches, and he was the one trying to fight instead of holding 24/7. Porter has since changed his fighting style to where he’s throwing punches even when he’s being held excessively like the way Brook was doing with him.
In Porter’s recent fight against Adrien Broner, Porter found himself being held nonstop by Broner. But instead of giving up and waiting for the referee to do his job by taking off points for the excessive holding, Porter used the opportunity to continue to nail Broner with shots and this led to Porter winning a lot of rounds by his constant work.
Brook wants to get a fight against the likes of Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao. There’s no way Mayweather is going to waste his time fighting Brook though because he wants to focus only guys that the American casual boxing fans have heard about, and the fans don’t have a clue who Brook is. Instead of fighting in the United States against the likes of Thurman, Porter, Maidana and Spence to increase his popularity, Brook has been fighting in the UK against the likes of Jo Jo Dan, Gavin, Senchenko, Carson Jones and Alvaro Morales.
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