Sunday, April 13, 2014
By Randy De La O
It seemed to piss fight fans off when Tim Bradley got the win in his first fight with Pacquiao. Like most I thought Pacquiao won the fight but in the heat of action in a close fight (relatively close), most fighters think they did enough to win. Bradley is no different. I don't hold it against him, nor did I want him to lose, as a form of revenge. I just thought a prepared Pacquiao would win.
Tim Bradley is a fighter, make no mistake about that. Since winning the title from Pacquiao in 2012, he has fought both Ruslan Provodnikov and Juan Manuel Marquez. The Provodnikov fight was as good as it gets. If there was ever any doubts about Bradley's chin and/or heart, it should have been erased that night. In Marquez he faced an all time great, still riding high on his knockout win over Pacquiao. He didn't just beat Marquez, he out countered the best counterpuncher of this era. That's saying a lot.
Bradley chose not to take the easy way out. He fought the best by choice. That alone should tell us everything we need to know about him.
I know it didn't set well with most fight fans when he brought up his injured calf. Sometimes a fighter, no make that a man, any man, needs something to hang onto after a loss. That pride, that refusal to lose is what takes a man to the very top of the sport. It's what makes a champion. It has to be hard to separate himself from that. If he wants to hang on to that it's okay with me. I've hung onto worse to salvage my own pride. We all have.
Bradley lost the fight last night. I don't think anyone thinks otherwise. Still, he has my absolute respect!