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Pacquiao vs Bradley 2: Manny and Tim insist the other needs big KO to win

Lee Cleveland Updated
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Fight legend Manny Pacquiao (55-4-2, 38 KO) will face WBO welterweight champion Timothy Bradley (31-0; 12 KO) on April 12 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Pacquiao vs Bradley 2 will be a rematch of their June 2012 bout which arguably produced the most controversial verdict in the history of the sport.

A modest contingent comprised of both fans and insiders felt Bradley's victory was well-deserved but the high majority of viewers insist incompetent judges rendered a bogus decision.

Will there be any changes in fight strategy the second time around?

"He has to knock me out to win," Pacquiao recently stated.

"My plan for this fight is to throw a lot of punches. More than [in the Rios] fight."

"I don't care is the fight is stopped or not. In this fight I have to prove that I can give them [the fans] a good show [with] aggressiveness," Pacquiao uttered during HBO's Face Off.

The esteemed Larry Merchant, a former longtime HBO commentator said in January, “I question whether Pacquiao can just outbox Bradley."

larry-merchant-hustleboss 1

“I think he’s going to have to outfight him. And we don’t know if that’s where Pacquiao wants to go.

“For me it’s a pick em’ fight,” Merchant told Chris Robinson of HustleBoss in an interview earlier this year. 

Regardless of what Pacquiao's strategy will be, the WBO welterweight champion has stressed, ironically, his opponent's only path to victory is via the knockout route.

And since Manny hasn't scored a knockout since 2009, the champ likes his chances in this bout because he believes Pac Man has gone soft.

"I didn't see the killer instinct [against Brandon Rios] that I normally see with Pacquiao," Bradley told BoxingScene last month.

"We're used to the Pacquiao who just comes through, wrecking things and being destructive and just knocking out guys."

Both fighters, for whatever reason, insist the other can't win a decision.

Are they playing mind games?

Perhaps they are attempting to the bait each other into fighting more reckless or desperate than planned?

"Last time, I was too nice. This time, I will finish what I start. I want to get back that belt he won off of me," Pacquiao said.

Pacquiao vs Bradley 2... Who will outpoint who?

Who will really need a knockout to win?

Will it even go the distance?


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