The closer we come to Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley squaring off, the more excited everyone seems to get. Even though this match was met with something of a ho-hum reaction when it was first announced, the prospect of Pacquiao taking on someone as athletic and young as Bradley is sort of growing on folks.
And for his part, the Filipino champion knows that all eyes will be on him this June. Even though there were some initial murmurs about how he might not be devoting as much time to preparation as he should, or that outside distractions may hinder his training process – that no longer seems to be the case. Pacquiao will be ready for Bradley and, one way or another, he’s going to make this a match to remember.
One of the things that will be slightly different this time around from fights past is Pacquiao’s newfound religiousness. Yes, the same religiousness that made many question whether or not his retirement from the sport was imminent. (It wasn’t.) During a recent interview with the good folks at AFP, Pacquiao expounded on what role God plays in his fight prep:
Philippine boxing icon Manny Pacquiao began training Wednesday for his June world title defense against US challenger Timothy Bradley, saying he has God in his corner.
Reciting biblical passages as he shadow-boxed in a park, Pacquiao said finding God earlier this year had not deprived him of the devastating speed and power that earned him eight world titles in as many divisions.
"Nothing has changed. I am still fully focused on training although now I am happier because I have God," he told reporters in the northern mountain resort of Baguio, where he undergoes altitude training ahead of all his fights.
The biggest question everyone had when Pacquiao announced how his newfound religiousness was completely changing his life, was what impact it would have on his boxing career. As of this moment, it appears that the answer is – not a huge one.
Pacquiao and Bradley will square off on June 9 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.