Fighter of the Decade and congressman Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao dominated former undefeated two-division world champion, Timothy “Desert Storm” Bradley in their rematch, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada.
Pacquiao (56-5-2, 38 KO’s) regains the title back that Bradley took away from him in their highly controversial (or shall I say highway robbery) fight in 2012. He proved that he’s the better fighter, and still a top caliber athlete. And can beat younger pound-for-pound fighters.
The scorecards reflect what transpired in the ring that reads 116-122 twice and 118-110 in favor of the Filipino southpaw.
I’m glad that there’s no odd scoring tonight.
Although it is evident that Pacquiao speed is no longer the same when he fought Oscar Dela Hoya, Ricky Hatton or Miguel Cotto, but at 35, his speed could still match Bradley which has decent speed. Pacquiao still have coordinated footwork and balance that played well in this fight.
Prior to the fight both men wanted to win convincingly and looking for a knockout.
However, the knockout never came out.
Maybe Pacquiao’s power has diminished, or it’s just that Bradley is too tough.
Yes! Bradley (31-1, 12 KO’s) is a tough fighter. He stayed and absorbed the best Pacquiao punch that landed. Look at Bradley’s abdominal muscle during the weigh-in. He can be an outright cast of “300” movie.
But yes, Pacquiao did win convincingly.
Although many believed Bradley has improved since the last fight, but I think he’s not. The thing is that in his recent fights he looked exciting to watch as he engaged toe-to-toe more often against Provodnikov and Marquez. And he showed that against Pacquiao on Saturday night. In round 4, he hurt Pacquiao with a solid punch during the exchanges. But he wasn’t able to follow up.
In rounds 5 and 6 Bradley engaged and challenged Pacquiao into a brawl. But Bradley’s lack of fire power made him backpedal when Pacquiao landed much heavier shots at him. Pacquiao had the power advantage. This is evident in round 7 wherein Bradley forced to back down as Pacquiao landed hard shots.
Pacquiao started to step up his offense in this round. Bradley would throw wide strong right hands over the top as Pacquiao lunged in for offense. I believe Bradley hope to emulate Marquez who landed a brutal right hand as Pacquiao rushed in. But Pacquiao was too cautious.
Retired HBO commentator Larry Merchant ask Pacquiao’s thoughts about the wild punches that Bradley throws that Merchant referred to as look like “amateur”. Bradley took the microphone and answered Merchant that it was part of the game plan to throw strong right hands over the top when Pacquiao comes in.
With the win, Pacquiao told Merchant that he proved that his journey in boxing will continue for a couple of years.
Pacquaio could have finished the fight unscathed. But the clash of heads with 20 seconds left in the fight leaves Pacquiao a cut above the left eye.
This was Pacquiao’s first fight in the U.S. since his 2012 knockout loss against arch-rival Juan Manuel Marquez. And he rocks the crowd at the MGM Grand with his dominating performance against Bradley.
Photo credit: Top Rank