Tim Bradley speaking inside of the Beverly Hills Hotel in Los Angeles on Tuesday afternoon (Photo: Chris Robinson – www.HustleBoss.com)
By Chris Robinson
Given each man’s modest approach in life, it was hardly a surprise to see Tim Bradley and Manny Pacquiao show so much respect towards one another while hosting their kickoff press conference this past Tuesday in Los Angeles.
Having upset Pacquiao via a highly-controversial split-decision in June of 2012, Bradley has never tried to discredit the Filipino star’s abilities or downplay him as a threat.
Still, when reflecting back on Pacquiao’s unanimous decision victory over Brandon Rios this past November, a fight that came nearly a year after Manny’s knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez, Bradley seemed to see a softer version of the eight-division titlist who has stormed through so many capable foes.
“He wasn’t really willing to take the chances like I normally see him do,” Bradley explained of Pacquiao. “When he gets a guy hurt or stung, he’ll go after him. Like I said, that’s the compassionate Manny. I still think he’s like that.”
Bradley was able to get a deeper sense of just how truly grounded Pacquiao is while coming face to face with him during Monday’s promotional shoot for HBO.
“At the face off, he couldn’t even say that he wanted to knock me out,” a seemingly bemused Bradley claimed. “That he’s going to knock me out. You know what I mean? It’s like he’s so humbled and he believes in what he believes in. He’s a real man.”
Bradley suffered injuries to both of his feet in the first Pacquiao encounter and seems to take comfort in the belief that he will go into the rematch a far different man.
“Because I’m going to be healthy,” said Bradley. “Styles make fights and Manny’s a difficult style to deal with because he’s so fast and like I said, he uses his feet very well; his movement. This fight is not going to be easy by no means. It’s going to be a tough fight.”
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Chris Robinson can be reached at Trimond@aol.com