Following a defiant seventh-round knockout of previously unbeaten Jose Pedraza (22-1, 12...
Bradley wins again, defeats Marquez
A professional boxer’s best attribute can either be a right-hook, a left-jab, or a sharp uppercut. Some fighters are better at counterpunching than defense, while other fighters can be referred to as knockout artists.
Timothy Bradley may not be any of the above mentioned, but one thing that separates him from any other is his self-confidence. Whatever Timothy Bradley lacks in skill, his self-belief from within himself makes up for it.
It is because of Bradley’s self-confidence and determination that he has notched his third split-decision victory in world title fights. Bradley (31-0, 12 KOs), famous for his split-decision victory over Manny Pacquiao, again proved his defiance by grinding out a 12-round split decision victory over Juan Manuel Marquez (55-7-1, 40 KOs) at the famed Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, NV on Saturday.
The judges scored the contest: 116-112 and 115-113 (Bradley) and 115-113 (Marquez). The bout was Bradley’s second successful title defense of the WBO 147-pound title and his 10th victory in world title fights dating back to five years ago.
“I was able to control him with my jab,” Bradley said. “I like to fight, but I had to listen to my corner. I had to stay smart. I had to box to get the win.”
According to CompuBox punch-stats, Bradley out-landed Marquez in total punches (168-153). Bradley also landed more jabs (82-38) and threw more punches overall (562-455).
Marquez, the future Hall of Fame boxer and perhaps one of the greatest boxing strategists of all-time, was competitive but wasn’t going to defeat Bradley unless he knocked him out. Marquez, last fall, finally earned his career-defining victory over Manny Pacquiao by knocking him out with one punch. Marquez pressured Manny before waiting for him to become overly aggressive. Manny dropped his hands and leaned into Marquez’ right hand.
Bradley was too careful in his approach with Marquez. Bradley simply didn’t want to end up like Manny.
“Marquez is a big puncher,” Bradley said. “I felt his punch in the first round when he dazed me with a left hook.”
Bradley went on to say that he strongly believed that the fight wasn’t as close as the judges hand it and that he was dominant.
“I didn’t think the fight was close,” Bradley added. “I felt I controlled the fight. I was confident about getting my hand raised for the most part.”
Sometimes winning a world title can make a fighter better and that’s the case with Bradley. He was a virtual unknown commodity in the boxing circle, but was popular as an amateur fighter in his native California. Bradley turned professional in August 2004 and fought exclusively as an unknown in California.
No one noticed Bradley until he challenged Junior Witter for the WBC junior welterweight championship in May 2008 in Witter’s native Nottingham, England. Bradley dominated the more experienced Witter in his native country and returned from Europe as the WBC 140-pound champion.
Bradley improved after each title defense and even unified the WBC/WBO junior welterweight titles by beating hard-punching Kendall Holt in April 2009 in Montreal, Canada. Bradley tasted the canvas twice, but displayed enough grit and determination to outhustle Holt through twelve rounds (115-111, 115-111, and 114-112).
In a heated grudge-match in January 2011, Bradley bullied slick-boxing Devon Alexander and was awarded a technical-decision after ten rounds. The fight ended after Alexander couldn’t see after an accidental clash of heads. Bradley came to fight, while Alexander was looking for a way out of the fight by complaining to the referee anytime Bradley was close enough to punch him. Bradley was leading on the scorecards: 98-93, 97-93, and 96-95.
Overall, in the last five years, Bradley has unified the WBC/WBO junior welterweight titles and is the current WBO welterweight champion. Bradley has defeated former world champions: Pacquiao, Marquez, Witter, Alexander, Holt, Nate Campbell, Joel Casamayor, and Lamont Peterson.
Bradley has worked hard enough by winning fights he wasn’t supposed to have won, or shouldn’t have won. Bradley continues to defy all odds and everyone against him both inside and outside of the boxing circle.
Timothy Bradley, as crazy as this may sound, has earned the right to fight Floyd Mayweather more so than Amir Khan and even unified WBC/WBA junior welterweight champion Danny Garcia. Bradley defeated both Pacquiao and Marquez by making them miss a lot and often. Bradley has proven resistance, relentless determination, and a self-belief which always makes for a great fight.