Bradley’s desert storm enough to split Pacquiao in Nevada
Timothy Bradley became the new WBO welterweight champion of the world last night, after beating Filipino legend Manny Pacquiao in Las Vegas.
Bradley, 28, won the fight via a controversial split decision as he was awarded 115-113 decisions by two judges, with Pacquiao given the same margin by the third.
This sees Pacquiao lose for the first time in seven years, whilst the new champion improves his record to 29-0, adding Pacquiao to the likes of Casamayor, Alexander, Peterson and Witter.
The compubox statistics show why the decision was questionable, with Pacquiao’s land percentage of 34% dwarfing Bradley’s 19%.
Pacquiao also landed more overall punches and jabs in spite of throwing fewer than his opponent.
However, in boxing unless you knock out your opponent there is always some doubt lingering, even if it is only minimal.
Pacquiao left too much to the imagination in too many of the rounds, allowing them to be open to interpretation rather than stamping his authority on them as he usually does.
This, coupled with Bradley throwing a higher volume of punches, may have been enough to sway the judges.
Many observers had Pacquiao winning by eight rounds to four, but this will be because many of these same people will score close rounds to the champion, rather than the challenger.
An old football cliché also springs to mind: over the course of the season (or career) these decisions always even themselves out.
This could prove true as many claim Pacquiao has found himself on the fortunate side of many debatable results, with his three victories over Marquez most examined.
This is where Floyd Mayweather differs from the boxing politician and why he is a better boxer.
Virtually none of Mayweather’s victories are questioned, the only one may be his victory over Oscar De La Hoya, but even still, most people agree that the now 43-0 fighter won.
But enough of Pacquiao, who could have missed the boat on a Mayweather fight.
Timothy Bradley fought the good fight and showed a strong chin to take Pacquiao’s straight lefts.
The victory leaves him with a couple of options; he can chase his biggest payday in taking on Mayweather, or he could take on Amir Khan, but firstly he will likely have to fulfil the rematch clause.
So, bemoan controversy and judges if you like, Manny, but over the course of a career these decision all even out.