Errol Spence can easily beat Manny Pacquiao – says Tim Bradley
By Pete Schramm: Tim Bradley is picking Errol Spence Jr to defeat Manny Pacquiao “easily” if he’s able to keep him on the outside by using his jab and distance on August 21st.
Former two-division world champion Bradley is well familiar with Pacquiao, having fought him three times during his career and beaten him once in his prime.
Bradley says if the 42-year-old Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39 KOs) were younger, he’d favor him to defeat the 31-year-old IBF/WBC welterweight champion Spence Jr (27-0, 21 KOs) in their fight at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Pacquiao is no longer young, and he’s lost speed with both his hands and his feet.
The movement that Pacquiao has shown this week while working out with his longtime trainer Freddie Roach pales in comparison to what he had a decade ago. Pacquiao is bigger and slower, and it’ll be easy for Spence to hit him.
Also, he hasn’t fought in two years since edging former WBA welterweight champion Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman by a 12 round split decision in 2019. That version of Pacquiao wouldn’t likely be good enough to beat Spence
Bradley not sure what Pacquiao has left
“It just all depends on what he has left. If you had a younger Pacquiao, I think he would be the favorite in this fight,” said Tim Bradley to Fighthub. “But you have a younger Errol Spence, bigger guy, stronger guy.”
It’s easy to play a game of ‘if’ for this fight, but the reality is, this isn’t the Pacquiao the younger Pacquiao from 2008 to 2011, and he’s facing a prime version of Spence. Everything is working against Pacquiao in this fight in all departments.
Pacquiao coming off a two-year layoff to take on a limited fighter like Mikey Garcia would be fine, but not to come back against Spence. The lack of activity for Pacquiao puts him at a tremendous disadvantage against Errol in this fight.
“If he [Spence] can control the distance on the outside and not allow him to get on the inside and close the gap on him quickly, he has a really good chance at beating and defeating Manny Pacquiao. Quite easily,” said Bradley.
“But Manny’s going to come out very quickly. He’s going to test him early; Errol Spence takes a little time to warm up a bit,” said Bradley.
Santa Cruz says Pacquiao will be the best ever on the planet if he wins
“Pacquiao still has it. He’s a legend, and he beat Keith Thurman not long ago, and I think he has a great chance against Spence,” said Leo Santa Cruz to Fino Boxing. “Spence is a great fighter, and it’s going to be a hard fight for both.’
You hate to disagree with Santa Cruz, but the truth is, we don’t know if Pacquiao still has it. Two years ago, you could say that Manny still had it, but you can’t say that now.
Santa Cruz is basing his opinion of Pacquiao based on him shadowboxing in front of his followers outside. That stuff doesn’t mean anything. What you can say is that Pacquiao is still fast, especially for a 42-year-old fighter.
At the same time, Pacquiao is nowhere near as quick as he was in 2009 when he destroyed Ricky Hatton and sent him into retirement.
“I think he wants to prove more. He wants to prove he can beat the young guys. He’s old already, and he’s beating young guys,” Santa Cruz said when asked why Pacquiao keeps taking serious challenges.
“If he beats Spence, he’s going to be the best ever on the planet because who does that and is old already with younger fighters like Thurman and Spence? It’ll be really great,” said Santa Cruz.
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