Boxing

Tim Bradley, Prime for the 147 Pound Pool

By Coach Tim Walker - I'd like to invite you all to add me as a friend on my new MySpace account (www.myspace.com/ coachtimwalker). It would be appreciated as I currently have no friends, LOL.

On to business. If you follow boxing at all, then you know his name, Timothy Bradley (25-0-0 KOs 11), the current WBO light welterweight world champion. To say he is talented, slick and full of heart is an understatement.. To not include him on a short list of the world's best boxers would be a travesty. Still, ultra-fame, the kind experienced by fighters he considers his equal, has yet to ensconce onto the well-schooled Bradley. He takes a huge step towards righting that ship on July 17, when he faces teak-tough undefeated banger, welterweight, Luis Carlos Abregu (29-0-0 KOs 23).

Many fighters nearing where Bradley is in his career would be looking to face less risky opposition, but Bradley is cut from a different grade of stock, and old school stock. The kind of pedigree that doesn't hide behind clichés, management and promoters to distance himself from the decisions to face or not face upper level fighters. Bradley really means it when he says he wants to fight the best out there, and it is evidenced in the competition he has faced, and the competition he intends to keep facing.

He got his first taste of a world title in May 2008 but before there was pro success, there was a solid amateur career. Bradley picked up boxing gloves at the age of 10. He amassed a two national championships and earned a #3 national ranking in a 140 bout career. As an amateur, he faced big names on a regular basis. Many of those fighters have embarked on successful professional careers as well. Names such as Andre Berto (26-0-0 KOs 20), Vanes Martirosyan (27-0-0 KOs 17), Alfredo Angulo (18-1-0 KOs 15), Juan McPherson (7-0-0 KOs 4), Vaughn Alexander (5-0-0 KOs 4) and many others. Taking on this early formidable competition is at least attributable to his desire and willingness to face anyone. He knows he can compete against them, and he feels he can beat them.

In 2008, he battled Junior Witter to a hard-nosed split decision win, capturing the WBC light welterweight title in the process. Fighting from the underdog spot, Bradley gave Witter all he could handle, knocking him down in the 6th round via an overhand right. The tough fights didn't stop there. Edner Cherry, Kendall Holt, Nate Campbell and Lamont Peterson share common space on Bradley's resume. That is, none of them have managed to beat him. The quality of those opponents is proven in their combined record, 145-13-5. His metal is further evidenced in his desire to face them though each was dangerous in their own right and possessed higher knockout ratios than he does.

Typically, when a fighter makes the move up in weight, questions arise concerning whether he will be able to maintain his speed and power. That may not be the appropriate question for Bradley who packs a lot of muscle onto his 5'-6" light welterweight frame. The move to 147 will allow him to eat more regularly and not dehydrate himself. Thus, allowing him to focus more on training and less on cutting weight. The benefits of being able to fully eat while training is evidenced in the performance of another current welterweight champion, who shall for the purposes of this article remain nameless.

Bradley's move up is not fully unexpected but is a bit interesting. The choice of his next opponent, Luis Abregu, isn't shocking either but is equally interesting. We have become accustom to him taking on bigger challenges but Abregu is no slouch. There are a doubtful few concerning Timothy Bradley's ability, because he seemingly lacks knockout power. This is thoroughly unfair. It is no easy task to knock out a man. Most of the time, if you go into the boxing ring looking for a knockout you can't fight it, and when it does happen you stumble upon it. Walter Bagehot, writer of the classic book, The English Constitution, spoke a very fitting quote. He said, "The greatest pleasure in life is doing what people say you cannot do." Let's see if Bradley can prove his naysayers wrong and firmly affix his moniker to the growing list of supreme welterweights.


Coach Tim Walker can be contacted via email at tpwalker@hotmail.com, his personal blog at boxing4life.blogspot.com, or his new myspace at www.myspace.com/coachtimwalker. Please feel free to make comments, ask questions or suggest fighters for Monthly Stud and The Project.

Article posted on 22.05.2010



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