Home Boxing News A look ahead to Manny Pacquiao vs. Tim Bradley

A look ahead to Manny Pacquiao vs. Tim Bradley

On June 9th the Philippines’ favourite son Manny Pacquiao returns to action against the undefeated Tim Bradley.  Bradley will challenge Pacquiao for his WBO welterweight world championship at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Both guys will be looking to impress, but for their own individual reasons.  Last time out Pacquiao was involved in a controversial Majority decision win against his Mexican rival Juan Manuel Marquez, with many believing that Marquez had done enough to win the fight.  Pacquiao will need an impressive performance this time out to prove to his critics that he isn’t on the slide and still has that fire burning in his heart.  If Pacquiao loses this fight, you can kiss goodbye to that slim chance of the Mayweather fight ever happening.  Bradley on the other hand  has been staking his claim to fight Pacquiao for the past two years and finally gets his chance.  He’ll be looking to bring a massive performance to prove to the world that he does indeed belong amongst boxing’s elite.

Bradley brings a challenge that Pacquiao is yet to face; a young, hungry, undefeated fighter who is willing to put everything on the line to climb the boxing ladder and claim his place at the top.  He’s also got a tick in the gut check box after he was down twice against Kendall Holt but came back to win a unanimous decision, and with names such as Devon Alexander, Lamont Peterson, and Joel Casamayor on his record, he’ll hardly be heading in to uncharted waters when he takes on Pacquiao.

Pacquiao goes in to the fight as a heavy favourite which is hardly surprising, but I think people are overlooking Bradley slightly, which could prove to be a little gem come fight night.  One has to wonder how long Manny Pacquiao has left in the ring, what with congress constantly at the back of his mind and his lack of motivation it seems.  If ever there was a perfect time for Bradley to fight Pacquiao, it’s now.  That doesn’t mean it’ll be an easy fight for either guy, not by any stretch of the imagination, but Pacquiao isn’t the fighter he was circa 2009 and that can only be a good thing for Bradley.

My keys to victory

For me, the key to victory for Manny has to be his punch output and angles.  An on form Manny Pacquiao can throw anywhere between 70-100 punches a round, which has to be the case for this fight.  He can’t outbox Bradley in my opinion so the key is to overwhelm him with his punch volume. Many of Pacquiao’s past opponents have said they just don’t see the punches coming, which is where the angles come in to play.  Bradley likes to rough things up so Pacquiao needs to be constantly on the move, buzzing in and out using those angles so Bradley can’t find his rhythm.

Bradley’s key to victory is to impose himself on Manny and apply constant pressure.   Last time out Manny was getting pushed back because Marquez was hitting him with stiff, accurate punches, if you can command the ring against Manny you’ve won half of the battle in my opinion.  Also an underrated tactic against Manny I believe is to go to the body, Margarito nearly snapped him in half with a body shot and body work seems to slow him down more than punches to the head do.  If Bradley can rough things up and combine pressure with combinations to both the body and the head I think he’s got a great chance of pulling off the upset, as I struggle to see how Manny can overwhelm Bradley on the inside.

As for the fight itself, we’ve got ourselves a great match up on the cards!  I fear though that Manny has declined beyond repair and we may never see the tornado of destruction that ripped through the divisions  again.  I really fancy Bradley for this one and it’s come at the right time for him so I’m going to stick my neck out and pick him to take the fight on a close unanimous decision.

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