Bradley: Pacquiao does the same thing
By Chris Williams: Tim Bradley (33-1-1, 13 KOs) isn’t expecting anything new from Manny Pacquiao (57-6-2, 38 KOs) when the two of them meet up next month in their scheduled fight on April 9 on HBO pay-per-view. Bradley sees Pacquiao as someone who fights with the same style every time out, and there’s nothing unpredictable about him.
Pacquiao’s trainer Freddie Roach always talks about how he’s coming up with a game plan for different fighters that Pacquiao faces, but it’s always the same style that the fans see from Pacquiao. Bradley isn’t worried about Pacquiao coming out and showing a new wrinkle in their fight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada. He doesn’t think Pacquiao as someone capable of changing at this point in his career.
“Manny Pacquiao pretty much does the same thing,” said Bradley. “He’s going to come forward and be the same Pacquiao we are always used to seeing being explosive with speed and looking to take guys out.”
Bradley is right. Pacquiao is not going to change for their third fight. The only way that I can see Pacquiao changing for this fight is if he can’t generate the same kind of power that he once did with his surgically repaired right shoulder.
Pacquiao suffered a torn rotator cuff of his right shoulder at some point in his career. He finally had the problem operated on after his fight against Floyd Mayweather Jr. last May. In that fight, Pacquiao aggravated the preexisting rotator cuff injury, but it didn’t keep him from using his right hand. There was no real sign of Pacquiao being injured at all. That’s why it was a surprise to a lot of boxing fans when after the fight, Pacquiao started talking about being injured and only being 60 percent of what he normally is.
“I’m sure his right hook will be better,” said Bradley.
Bradley’s not thinking that Pacquiao’s shoulder injury will be a problem for him. Bradley is expecting Pacquiao to be the same Pacquiao as in his two previous fights with him in 2012 and 2014. Bradley thinks Pacquiao’s right shoulder will be back to full strength. We’re going to find out if that’s the case on April 9 when Bradley gets inside the ring with the Filipino star for what could be the final time.
“He’s going to be the same dangerous Pacquiao we have always seen. I’m expecting a tough fight and I’m expecting a smart fight. I am not expecting any weaknesses from Manny Pacquiao,” Bradley said.
If Pacquiao does have some kind of lingering problem with his right shoulder, then he’s not going to stand a chance against Bradley, because he seems to be hitting prime right now. I’ve never seen Bradley fighting better than he is now. He always had the physical tools to be one of the best in the sport, but his fight strategy seemed to get him in trouble in the past.
Bradley’s fights against Pacquiao, Ruslan Provodnikov and Jessie Vargas were ones where he was using a flawed game plan to fight these guys on their terms instead of his. However, even when fighting the wrong fight against these guys, Bradley still got the better of them in most cases. The one exception was in his rematch with Pacquiao in 2014. Bradley had a calf injury that made it impossible for him to move or generate power on his shots.
Bradley had to stand in the pocket and throw shots without being able to put all of his power into them. Pacquiao took advantage of the injured Bradley to win a decision. Bradley was still able to hurt Pacquiao at one point in the fight, however.
“He does pretty much the same thing – I don’t think there is anything out of the ordinary. I don’t think he’s going to do a new wrinkle right away,” said Bradley. “He’s been fighting the same way since I have seen him. He knows me but I think I’m going to be a little different this time,” Bradley said.
He fact that Bradley knows Pacquiao’s style so well is a bad thing for Pacquiao. He obviously picked Bradley out as his final opponent because he wants to end his career with a win, and then hopefully move on to a career in politics in the Philippines. However, Bradley could spoil Pacquiao’s plans because of his firm knowledge of his fighting style.
Bradley already knows how to beat Pacquiao by using movement, jabbing and connecting with single pot shots. Bradley is in a good position to spoil Pacquiao’s plans for a career in politics by giving him a beating and knocking him out on April 9. I don’t think Pacquiao will get elected if he gets knocked out or beat in any fashion by Bradley. I see the Filipino fans wanting a winner when they choose to cast their votes in May.
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