After shooting down Adrien Broner rumors, that initial report from The Mirror which claims that Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley Jr. will be facing off for a third time came to being after all.
Everything was made official Wednesday as earlier reported though not everyone is convinced that it is a fitting send-off for the eight-time division boxing champion.
Lyle Fitzimmons of the Bleacher Report sees it as no chance for glory and technically considers it “Andre Berto 2.0”.
While Timothy Bradley Jr. did appear to be a better fighter when he won via TKO in the 9th round over Brandon Rios back in November, Pacquiao remains the favorite to win over Bradley on April 9, 2016 in Las Vegas.
Even Bradley’s former trainer, Joel Diaz, believes that Pacquiao chose “Desert Storm” because he was the safest option from the mix which included Terence Crawford and Amir Khan.
“The reason why Pacquiao is choosing him is because (Bradley) can’t hurt him,” said Diaz to The Desert Sun. “If Pacquiao chooses Bradley, he will knock him out this time. People don’t want to see that fight again.”
Before the fight was announced, Jeff Mayweather (trainer and uncle of retired and undefeated boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr.) felt that even with a new trainer in Teddy Atlas, Pacquiao will still come out as the eventual winner.
“I don’t think that Teddy Atlas — or anyone else — can help him win. He may do a little better but at the end of the day, Tim’s been in a lot of wars since the last time they fought. He may have more wear and tear on him than Pacquiao does,” says the elder Mayweather via ‘On The Ropes Boxing Radio’.
But then again, it does offer a slight sidelight with Atlas and Freddie Roach likely to engage in a colorful word war. The two have already started some psyche wars recently with Roach taking a swipe at Atlas via Boxingscene.com
“Nothing [would be different in a third fight]. We’ll hear some good stories [from Atlas], that’s all. He’s a good storyteller,” says Roach.
And then there is the question on whether this is indeed Pacquiao’s last fight. While the Filipino boxer/lawmaker stressed that it was before he devotes his full time to politics, the LA Times says that both have agreed not to market this as Pacquiao’s final fight.
And the obvious reason is that Pacquiao is still hoping for a rematch with Mayweather if the Filipino boxing icon is able to come out with an impressive performance that could lure the undefeated American boxer out of retirement.