Manny Pacquiao is desperately looking for a way to spice up his looming June showdown versus Timothy Bradley. Unfortunately, pumping folks up about a bout (see what I did there?) as vanilla as that one when you previously teased them with a dream match is no easy feat.
So what’s a guy to do? Well, if that guy is Pacquiao – the thing to do is to take a page out of an arch rival’s playbook.
In a move straight from Floyd Mayweather Jr.'s bag of tricks, Pacquiao has begun to systematically take his future opponent, Bradley, apart in the media. Because the Filipino champion is unquestionably one of the two top pound-for-pound fighters in the world, he gets a mic from the press whenever he wants. And if he wants to use that mic to point out Bradley’s many, many, many flaws – then that’s just what’ll end up happening.
During a recent event at the Wack Wack Golf and Country Club, the good folks from the Philippine Star were able to catch up with Pacquiao. Here is a collection of what the champ had to say about his likely June 9th opponent:
“Tatakbo ‘yan (He will run),” said Pacquiao.
Bradley was labeled by Pacquiao’s chief trainer, Freddie Roach, as a dirty fighter who uses his head and elbows aside from his hands.
Pacquiao thinks so, too.
“Madumi nga (Yes, he’s dirty),” said the reigning WBO welterweight champion.
“Napapansin ko nga. Gumagamit ng ulo (I’ve noticed it. He uses his head),” added Pacquiao of the WBO junior-lightweight champion from Cathedral City.
Pacquiao is right, of course. On both counts. Bradley will likely run from him (heck, he’s still running from Amir Khan) and he is a somewhat dirty fighter. It’s probably not fair to label him as a completely dirty fighter just because everyone seems to be fighting a little dirtier these days, but the point about the elbows is very accurate.
Nevertheless, it’s interesting that Pacquiao has taken to shining a light on his likely opponent’s flaws this early in the ball game. Clearly he’s trying to drum up a little hype for the match, but you have to wonder if maybe there was a little permanent damage done to his status as a record-breaking PPV draw because of that drawn out, fluke PR battle with Mayweather this winter.
Then again, maybe that’s giving fans too much credit. Pacquiao, Mayweather and both guys’ respective camps are betting on the fact that the general public will eat up their products regardless of who they end up fighting. To date, they’ve been right.
Will that change?
We’ll find out soon enough.