LOS ANGELES: Timothy Bradley heads into a 12-round welterweight fight with Brandon Rios on Saturday (Sunday in Manila) looking to jumpstart his career and show there are no lingering effects from a less than inspiring win in his last outing.
Bradley was badly hurt in the 12th round of his last fight with Jessie Vargas in June after Vargas nailed him with a big right hand and the fight was nearly stopped.
Bradley (33-1-1, 12 KOs) won a controversial decision leaving some to wonder how he will hold up in the later rounds against a hard puncher like Rios (33-2-1, 24 KOs).
World Boxing Organization welterweight champ Bradley and former World Boxing Association lightweight champ Rios face each other at the Thomas & Mack Center arena in Las Vegas.
Bradley has a new trainer in Teddy Atlas after cutting ties with longtime trainer Joel Diaz. Atlas, who once helped train a teenage Mike Tyson, is trying to get Bradley to fight smarter which means throwing less punches and moving more efficiently around the ring.
Like Bradley, fellow American Rios has had some spotty results of late, losing two of his last four bouts. The 29-year-old is making his first appearance in 10 months and hasn’t held a world title in four years.
“The way to beat Tim Bradley is to put on pressure in the fight and try to knock him out,” Rios’ trainer Robert Garcia said.