The following is the fourth installment of training camp notes from WBO junior welterweight titleholder Tim Bradley in advance of his challenge for the WBO welterweight belt owned by Manny Pacquiao, a matchup that will take place on June 9 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on HBO Pay Per View.
The notes were taken from a press release interview with Bradley (28-0, 12 knockouts) distributed by HBO on behalf of Top Rank Inc., the lead promoter of his bout with Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38 KOs).
Bradley is coming off an eighth-round stoppage over former four-time titleholder and Cuban Olympic gold medalist Joel Casamayor that was accomplished on the undercard of Pacquiao’s disputed majority decision victory over Juan Manuel Marquez in November.
Question for Bradley: What is your reaction to the criticism of your physical style, and will you need to make adjustments to win over fans and become one of the sport’s top attractions? Pacquiao aside, are there any fighters in particular you’d like to face most, and do you have any other specific long-term career goals?
“I don’t really hear much criticism from the fans about my style of fighting. I think they enjoy my physical style. I go for it every time I fight. I enjoy the action as much as they do. I agree with Manny Pacquiao in that I believe the fans that buy a ticket or tune in on TV deserve to be entertained. Putting on a good show every time I’m in the ring is almost as big a priority as winning.
“Boxing fans know what I bring to the table. They know to expect my best every time I enter the ring. I’m undefeated and have been a world champion since 2008. Twice I have unified the junior welterweight title. If anything, I think my popularity is growing because of my style of fighting. Since announcing my challenge of Manny Pacquiao, I have been inundated with good wishes from fans from around the world, including the Philippines.
“If I change something in my fighting style, it’s not because I want to be popular, it’s because I want to win. There are things that can’t be avoided in a fight, and they’re not intentional. I hope that fans can recognize my skills over faults. I consider myself a student of boxing. A student-athlete, if you will. When I am training or watching tape, I look to build on previous performances — to improve. That is what motivates me to work harder. It keeps me fresh. My training camps are always different and stimulating.
“Because there is a rematch clause in our fight contract I will have to beat Manny Pacquiao again in November. After that I look forward to matching myself with top fighters like Juan Manuel Marquez, Floyd Mayweather and anyone my promotional team and manager believe will further build my legacy as one of the best whoever stepped inside the ring.”
Photo by Chris Farina, Top Rank
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com