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Pacquiao favored to beat Bradley

Manny Pacquiao Timothy BradleyBy Chris Williams: Manny Pacquiao is a slight favorite to beat Tim Bradley this Saturday night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada. This is their third fight together. Bradley won the first fight in 2012, and Pacquiao the second in 2014.

Bradley figures that he needs to win conclusively in order to get the decision and prove that he’s the netter fighter than the 37-year-old Pacquiao. However, with Pacquiao now 37, and coming off of a loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr. and a serious shoulder injury, Bradley likely won’t get a great deal of credit even if he beats Pacquiao.

The boxing world already believes that Pacquiao won the first to contests between the two fighters, and there’s not much Bradley can do to convince those fans that he’s the better fighter. Even if Bradley knocks Pacquiao out on Saturday night, fans will likely say that Bradley didn’t beat a prime Pacquiao. The fans would be right, but there’s nothing that can be done about that. Pacquiao and his promoter Bob Arum were the ones that wanted to take the fight with Bradley, and of course Bradley is going to take that fight because of the huge payday he’ll be getting.

“I’ve got to win decisively,” Bradley said.

Pacquiao is a -225 favorite, while Bradley is +175, according to Bovada’s odds.
You can’t see Pacquiao in the same light as you did in his two previous fights against Bradley, because Pacquiao has been out of the ring two out of the last years due to an injury to his right rotator cuff and a bad knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez.

In Pacquiao’s last fight against Floyd Mayweather Jr. last May, Pacquiao looked like a shot fighter without the courage to go after Mayweather the way he needed to. Pacquiao had a shoulder injury though before that fight, and he was denied the ability to get a shot for the problem before the fight. He should have canceled the fight rather than going forward and taking it with just one good arm.

We don’t know what the condition is of Pacquiao’s surgically repaired shoulder other than what’s been told by us from Pacquiao and his trainer Freddie Roach. Since they didn’t let the boxing world know about the injury before the Mayweather fight last time, we don’t know if Pacquiao is coming into this Saturday’s fight with some kind of injury that will keep him from being 100 percent.

It’s doubtful that anything will be said about injuries this time around if Pacquiao loses. I don’t think we’re going to hear about any injuries because of the negative fallout last time when Pacquiao and Arum revealed that he had fought injured.

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“If I got up here and talked about the fight and what a close fight it was, nobody would believe me because nobody believes promoters and I can’t really blame them for that,” said Arum via Fight News. “But now you heard it from guys who handle the money, the Race & Sport Book. This fight is a 2:1 fight! I haven’t seen a [mega] fight that close in odds in years, so as far as the punters are concerned, 2:1, it’s a close fight, it’s anybody’s fight!”

Being the betting favorite really doesn’t mean much given how poor Pacquiao looked in his last fight. All you can say is that the oddsmakers are making their judgements based on past events rather than the Pacquiao that we’re seeing now. I think if the oddsmakers looked at Pacquiao’s last fight against Mayweather and then looked at Bradley’s last fight against Brandon Rios, they would be making Bradley the favorite in this fight rather than Pacquiao.

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Bradley spoke about his belief in thinking that Pacquiao will still get elected into the senate if he loses his fight to him on Saturday. I’m not sure that I agree with that. I think a lot of people believe that whether Pacquiao gets elected into the senate seat in the May elections in the Philippines will be determined on the outcome of Saturday’s fight. If Pacquiao wins the fight, then he’s probably got the job. But if Pacquiao loses to Bradley, and then starts coming up with excuses for his loss by saying he was injured, then I don’t see him getting elected.

Additionally, If Pacquiao fails to give credit to Bradley for beating him by acknowledging that he lost, then I see him not getting elected. After Pacquiao’s loss to Mayweather last May, Pacquiao failed to admit that he was beaten by Mayweather, and he also gave an injury excuse. Mayweather was disappointed in Pacquiao failing to admit that he’d been beaten, and he concluded that the Filipino fighter was a poor sport and unable to give credit to the better main in the fight. Mayweather was initially talking about wanting to fight Pacquiao in a rematch, but after he heard him failing to admit that he’d been beaten, Mayweather changed his mind completely and said he wasn’t going to give Pacquiao a rematch.

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