This probably wasn’t the way that Manny Pacquiao envisioned himself heading into his June 9 bout versus Timothy Bradley. Generally speaking, in the weeks leading up to a match, fighters aim to tune out any and all noise, avoid every single bit of controversy imaginable, and focus on nothing but boxing in order to ensure maximum success. Given the Manny Hates Gays fire that he was busy putting out all last week, though, it’s probably safe to say that Pacquiao has been about as distracted as humanly possible over the last seven days.
And, of course, that’s in addition to all the out-of-ring stuff he already had on his plate. The legal issues. The tax problems. The marriage concerns. The list of diversions was endless even before the scandal that ultimately rocked him last week.
So when you couple all of that stuff together, in theory, Bradley should’ve seen his odds improve. A distracted Pacquiao coming off one of his worst showings years (last November’s bout versus Juan Manuel Marquez) and with a lot of outside noise killing his prep for this showdown had to boost Bradley’s chances just a little bit, right?
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The odds remain the same as they were. Bovada continues to list it at: Pacquiao -450 Bradley +325, with the over/under on rounds still set at 9.5. And Ladbrokes continues to offer the same odds on when the Filipino champion will take his opponent down:
Manny Pacquiao Winning in Round 1: 33/1
Manny Pacquiao Winning in Round 2: 28/1
Manny Pacquiao Winning in Round 3: 25/1
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Manny Pacquiao Winning in Round 4: 22/1
Manny Pacquiao Winning in Round 5: 20/1
Manny Pacquiao Winning in Round 6: 18/1
Manny Pacquiao Winning in Round 7: 16/1
Manny Pacquiao Winning in Round 8: 16/1
Manny Pacquiao Winning in Round 9: 16/1
Manny Pacquiao Winning in Round 10: 16/1
Manny Pacquiao Winning in Round 11: 18/11
Manny Pacquiao Winning in Round 12: 20/1
Frankly, this has to be pretty demoralizing for Bradley. With all of the stuff going against Pacquiao at the moment, if the Vegas odds makers still have no faith in him to pull off the upset, that’s about as big an insult as you'll ever see.
While it’s never easy to get into the minds of the people who put these numbers together, you have to figure that Bradley’s lack of legitimate KO power is really scaring them from giving him a better shot. On paper, he has the athleticism necessary to at least keep things interesting, but if all he’s going to do is run around the ring with the Filipino champ from start to finish, sooner rather than later he will get dropped.