Zab Judah on a Pacquiao-Bradley rematch: ‘Tim Bradley’s one of the hardest-fighting people in boxing’

Zab Judah training in Las Vegas, Nevada ahead of his Showtime match against Paulie Malignaggi (Photo: Chris Robinson –

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By Chris Robinson

Given the fact that he had just been knocked out by Juan Manuel Marquez this past December, there was some definite curiosity surrounding Manny Pacquiao’s return to the ring against Brandon Rios on Nov. 23 in Macau, China.

Pacquiao was in top form, however, as he out boxed Rios and tagged him with crisp shots throughout before winning a wide unanimous decision verdict.

Watching the action unfold, former two-division world champion Zab Judah felt like it was a standard exhibition from the left-handed stylist from the Philippines.

“It was the same Pacquiao show,” Judah stated from his personal gym in Las Vegas recently. “Guys can’t get past his offense and they just hold their guards up and they just take a bunch of punches and they are just in there to survive. You know what I mean?”

Asked if he saw the vintage Manny Pacquiao that captured the public’s imagination in recent years, Judah didn’t seem to agree, pointing towards his 11-month layoff as one of the reasons.

“You’ve got to give him time, because he had a long layoff,” Judah added. “Me, I’m one of them people that knows about layoffs. I’ve been suspended twice in my career on two different occasions. Both of them was one-year suspensions. Which allowed me not to do what I love to do best, which is fight. When I came back I wasn’t as sharp as when I left.”

One thing Judah wasn’t going to do was to criticize Rios in the wake of a lopsided defeat.

“Brandon did what he had to do,” Judah said, putting the situation in perspective. “We all can say what he coulda, woulda, shoulda did. But Brandon Rios was in there. He seen the speed and felt the power of Pacquiao, so evidently he felt that what he did was what he had to do to stay on his feet.”

All eyes now turn to Pacquiao’s return to the ring, which appears to be slated for next April in Las Vegas.

A logical opponent at this point is WBO welterweight champion Tim Bradley, who edged Manny via a controversial split-decision in June of last year.

Giving his thoughts on the potential rematch, Judah paid his respect to Bradley.

“That’s a very interesting fight,” said Judah. “Like I tell people, Bradley is one of the hardest-fighting people in boxing. He throws 90-million punches; he’s going to be on you for three minutes and 12 rounds. If you fight Tim, you’re going to come to fight.

“He’s a tough dude; he can box,” Judah added. “Listen, I like the guy.”

As for Judah, he leaves in the coming days for Brooklyn, New York in advance of his Showtime battle against Paulie Malignaggi this weekend.

PLEASE  CHECK  BELOW  for more all-access Pacquiao vs. Rios coverage…

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Chris Robinson can be reached at


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