By Rich Mancuso
Timothy Bradley signed with Top Rank to get his opportunity, a chance to meet Manny Pacquiao. After back-and-forth negotiations, and after Bob Arum and Pacquiao weighed options for the next opponent, Bradley became the name.
The June 9th fight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, assumed to be televised by HBO Pay-Per-View, will be announced Friday with a press tour to be determined. Bradley built his platform to get Pacquiao after leaving the 140-pound division and turning down a lucrative opportunity to fight Amir Khan, and would oppose Pacquiao the first time at welterweight.
The turn of events led to speculation. Bradley had ties with Top Rank. He has been vocal about getting an opportunity at Pacquiao, and when the Floyd Mayweather fiasco continued with his signing a deal to fight Miguel Cotto, Bradley was right in the mix.
Bradley says Pacquiao can be beat. Styles make fights and of course Bradley will be the underdog. Is this a marketable pay-per-view fight, and is Bradley the proper opponent for the Pacquiao legacy to continue? Apparently so, because Arum had Bradley in the mix with Juan Manuel Marquez, Cotto or Lamont Peterson, as the Mayweather fight remained in the balance.
Still to be determined is how much Bradley will earn, which will be his highest pay day, more than he would have made if he took the fight with Khan.
THROWING THE PUNCHES:
Knock out reports that Victor Ortiz is fighting Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero. Or that the arm injury to Andre Berto was a ploy to give Berto more time. Ortiz and Berto has been rescheduled for June 30 at the Mandalay Bay from Las Vegas and televised on Showtime. Reached for comment, Ortiz said, “I prepared for Andre Berto. This is the fight fans want to see. Do I want to fight Guerrero? When the time is right I take any challenge.”
Amir Khan reportedly will have a return about with Lamont Peterson, so says Khan on his Twitter account. However, the IBF which mandated the rematch, based on the controversy of their fight in December, when Peterson won the title in Washington D.C. has not confirmed the May 19th date in Las Vegas that Khan is stating…
Question is, how fair is an open scoring system for the sport when it only occurs at a WBC title fight in Mexico, seen again last Saturday during the Chavez-Rubio fight… What is mandatory and happening is an IBF title fight for super middleweight champion Lucian Bute against Carl Froch…
Paul Williams says every time he gets in the ring he makes a statement. He has to back that up for sure when he meets Nobuhiro Ishida on Showtime February 18th… Hector Camacho Jr. who had three fights called off for some reason last year says this one is set. The March 30 bout with Elvin Ayala, the once again rising middleweight, from Foxwoods Resort in Connecticut and televised on ESPN 2 Friday Night Fights….
On that Paul Williams Showtime card, Chris Arreloa opposes Eric Molina in a heavyweight title eliminator bout. Hope Showtime will cut the mike off when Arreloa speaks in the ring because so many times, after a loss on HBO, the network failed to censor his foul mouth.