Former Filipino world boxing champions agree that Manny Pacquiao enjoys the big edge he faces World Boxing Organization welterweight champion Timothy Bradley in a rematch on April 12 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Former World Boxing Council bantamweight and WBO featherweight champion Gerry Peñalosa believes that the 35-year-old Pacquiao has the upperhand in terms of speed, power, footwork and ring skills.
“Manny’s skills are still far greater than Timothy Bradley. You can see it in all aspects,”Peñalosa told The Manila Times Friday. “Especially now that Manny improves a lot and he’s coming to get back against Bradley.”
Peñalosa is also Pacquiao’s business and promotional partner.
Two-time former world boxing champion Luisito Espinosa share Peñalosa’s observation, saying that Bradley’s chances against Pacquiao is to run although he can’t hide this time.
“It’s going to be Manny this time,” said Espinosa. “Manny really wanted to get his belt back. Once Manny begins his training, I’m sure he’ll be at his best form. He’ll be going to be faster and stronger unlike the first time they met.”
Bradley (31-0 win-loss slate with 12 knockouts) defeated Pacquiao (55-5-2 with 38 knockouts) via decision in June 2012, but majority of boxing community were not convinced with his victory.
The Californian Bradley, known as “Desert Storm”, has said in various interviews he’ll prove that he can repeat over Pacquiao and this he will retire the former eighth weight world division title holder.
But Peñalosa does not see a Pacquiao loss.
“It will be an easy fight for Manny all the way. Once he get caught by Pacquiao’s swinging left hook and tough combinations, Bradley is over,” Peñalosa said.
Pacquiao returned to the ring last November in Macau, China, with a convincing majority win over Brandon Rios – almost a year after absorbing a sixth round knockout loss to Mexican Juan Manuel Marquez in December 2012.
JOSEF T. RAMOS