Timothy Bradley dominates Abregu then calls out Pacquiao!

by Geoffrey Ciani - WBO junior welterweight champion Timothy Bradley decided to test out the waters in the 147 pound weight class in order to create more opportunities. Bradley succeeded in his experiment and outclassed undefeated welterweight contender Luis Carlos Abregu over twelve full rounds at the Agua Caliente Casino in Rancho Mirage, California. Bradley was awarded a unanimous decision victory for his efforts with final scores reading 118-110, 117-111, and 116-112. Bradley improved to 26-0 while Abregu falls to 29-1.

Bradley started the opening round working behind his jab. He was doubling up, tripling up, and sometimes even quadrupling up with it in order to control the distance. Abregu seemed sluggish at the onset as he tried coping with Bradley’s superior hand speed. An accidental clash of heads caused a small cut to open up on both boxers (Bradley's right eye, Abergu's hairline) but nothing fight threatening. Bradely won the first on sheer activity. In the second, Bradley began getting more comfortable and he unloaded a big right hand which found the mark stunning his taller foe. Abregu recovered quickly but Bradley's timing and quickness appeared to confuse him.

Bradley continued controlling the pace of the action in round three. He was working his jab beautifully while mixing in some really good left hooks and straight rights. Round four saw more of the same, but Abregu started finding a rhythm and landed a couple of decent right hands of his own. Despite scattered spots of success, Abregu was unable to find his groove while Bradley dictated the terms. Bradley continued outboxing Abregu throughout the fifth and sixth and seemed well on his way to victory.

Another accidental clash of heads caused a break in the action during the seventh. Both fighters were swapping leather in close quarters when skulls collided. This caused Abregu to momentarily drop to the canvas. He seemed a bit uneasy for a moment, but action soon resumed and the two fighters were again in close quarters. Abregu attempted to clinch, and in doing so, he left the right side of his face wide open. Bradley pounced on the opportunity and unleashed a series of vicious short lefts to the head which visibly shook Abregu. He soon recuperated and the fight continued in a familiar pattern with Bradley almost always getting the better of the exchanges.

Abregu did a little better in the eighth but was never able to muster up enough offense to force Bradley out of his comfort zone. As a result, Bradely just continued doing his thing. Abregu started coming on in a little more in the ninth and Bradley appeared to be tiring. However, Bradley soon caught his second wind and exploded with a short left hook that once again stunned Abregu. After that Bradley more or less coasted over the final three rounds. Bradley exhibited great timing, the ability to control the ring, good movement, a nice variety of punches, a nice jab, and outstanding discipline. The only thing lacking in his arsenal is one-punch knockout power, but given Bradley’s style and superb conditioning, this does not impact his overall ability to perform at a high level.

Bradley’s stated goal in taking this fight was to help create more opportunities for himself and tonight he succeeded in doing that. It was the type of victory that keeps him winning and at the same time, it was not the type of victory that will scare off potential would-be opponents in the talented rich 140-147 pound weight range. So where does Bradley go from here?

Bradley has a lot of potential options. When the fight concluded and HBO commentator Max Kellerman asked him if he was interested in a fight against WBC/IBF junior welterweight champion Devon Alexander, Bradley announced other plans when he said, “I’m making a challenge right now, baby. Manny Pacquiao, come break down this wall. Manny, come break down this wall. I challenge Manny Pacquiao at 147 pounds”. Whether or not landing this fight is practical is a matter for debate. What is not up for debate, however, is the fact that Bradley represents a great alternative for Pacquiao in the event a fight between him and Floyd Mayweather Junior cannot be made.

If a big money fight against a Pacquiao or Mayweather cannot be made, Bradley still has a handful of options at 140, which in addition to Alexander, also includes WBA champion Amir Khan and top contender Marcos Maidana. When pressed about who he wants next in the event he cannot land a match with Pacquiao, Bradley stated, “Anybody, any of the top guys out there—especially you Devon Alexander. If everything is alright and the money’s right and everything’s signed up, I’ll fight you next. Devon, Maidana, and Khan—I’ll fight all of them. I’m a throwback fighter, baby.”

Whichever direction he chooses, all of those fighters represent interesting options for the talented Timothy Bradley.


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Article posted on 18.07.2010

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