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Pacquiao’s win crystal clear as early as 7th

By Alex P. Vidal

It looked like Timothy Bradley was made of stone and was a symbol of ring savagery in the first and fourth rounds. Until he changed tactics in 6th and everything turned tupsy turvy in as far as Team Bradley defense was concerned.
Pacquiao (56-5-2, 38 KOs) had the WBO welterweight title in the bag as early as 7th round when Bradley (31-1, 12 KOs) started to miss and absorbed Pacquiao’s combos each time the defending champion from Palms Springs, California was pinned on the ropes.
If it was a battle for the gold medal in the Olympics, Pacquiao was a run-away winner. The judges confirmed this with scores of 116-112, 116-112, 118-110. Pacquiao, 35, more determined than the first duel with the unbeaten Bradley, took advantage of Bradley’s change of style midway in the fight by unleashing powder puff but punches that came in volumes.
Bradley tagged Pacquiao with crisp jabs and hooks early in the fight but these were not enough to overrun the Filipino challenger’s lead that hiked in the 8th, 9th, 10th and 12th. Bradley secured round 11 with a hit and run tactic but his fate was sealed.

DESTRUCTIVE

Bradley was destructive when he tackled Pacquiao from a distance where he used left jabs effectively to put the American ring enemy at bay. Bradley elected to brawl with the hard-hitting Filipino congressman in the third stanza and wanted to end the event with a single blow.
He started to miss wild punches when Pacquiao cut the ring and refused to give space for his showboat display actually meant to avoid Pacquiao’s solid left. Bradley spent the rest of the rounds backpedaling after 7th and slowed down the rest of the fight. Bradley got tired and his work rate declined entering the second half of the 12-round rumble.
Team Bradley sensed they were trailing on points entering the 9th round. A knockout was all they needed to upset Pacquiao for the second time. By the 10th, Pacquiao’s lead was insurmountable and even if he did not throw a punch and use only his lateral movements, he was already a sure winner.
It was Bradley’s third defense of the WBO 147-lb crown he wrested from Pacquiao on a controversial 12-round split decision on June 9, 2012 also at the MGM Grand.

VACANT

No one has beaten Pacquiao convincingly on points except Erik Morales. In a rare display of unanimous agreement, three judges submitted similar scores when they awarded two vacant boxing titles to Morales, the first and only man in history to ever beat Manny Pacquiao convincingly by unanimous decision.
There was no uproar or storm of protest when Morales, nicknamed “El Terible”, subdued Pacquiao for vacant WBC international super featherweight and IBA super featherweight titles at the MGM Grand on March 19, 2005.
Judges Paul Smith, Dave Moretti, and Chuck Giampa all scored an identical 115-113. Referee Joe Cortez had no problem controlling the action as both Morales and Pacquiao played professionally and did not employ dirty tactics.

DANCE

“I erred when I allowed him to dance and avoid my heavy blows,” Pacquiao said in Tagalog when pressed to recall the first of his three encounters with the Mexican heartthrob.
Pacquiao destroyed Morales in their next two meetings, the only trilogy in the Filipino’s career, winning by TKO in 10th on January 21, 2006 and KO in 3rd on November 18, 2006. Both massacres occured at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas.
Prior to losing a unanimous verdict to Morales, Pacquiao’s two other previous defeats were clean knockouts inflicted by unheralded fellow Filipino Rustico Torrecampo and Medgoen Singsurat of Thailand.
Pacquiao, then a skinny flyweight prospect, fell flat like a sack of potatoes in 3rd after being hit in the chin by Torrecampo’s powerful wallop in a 10-round non-title header in Mandaluyong City on Feb. 9, 1996.

VICTORIES

After chalking up 13 straight victories, Pacquiao again wiped the canvas with his face after being blasted by Singsurat, then nicknamed “3-K Battery”, in a gallant and failed bid to retain his WBC flyweight crown in Nakhon Si Thammarat, Thailand on September 9, 1999.
He had to leave the flyweight division and move up after the Singsurat debacle where he racked up 11 straight wins as a super bantamweight terror that included a spectacular KO win over the late Lehlo Ledwaba to claim the IBF super bantamweight diadem at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on June 23, 2001.
The controversial split decision loss to Bradley came 14 fights after his loss to Morales, winning 13 and drawing one against Juan Manuel Marquez on Nov. 12, 2011.
Aside from Morales, no boxer has beaten Pacquiao on points convincingly. Because of the gravity of pressure and force Pacquiao applies in all his fights, either his opponents end up snoring in the canvas or he is the one counting the stars after falling head first like in his December 8, 2012 duel against Marquez.

 
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Posted by on April 13, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Only Erik Morales could beat Pacquiao on points

By Alex P. Vidal

In a rare display of unanimous agreement, three judges submitted similar scores when they awarded two vacant boxing titles to Erik Morales, the first and only man in history to ever beat Manny Pacquiao convincingly by unanimous decision.
There was no uproar or storm of protest when Morales, nicknamed “El Terible”, subdued Pacquiao for vacant WBC international super featherweight and IBA super featherweight titles at the MGM Grand on March 19, 2005.
Judges Paul Smith, Dave Moretti, and Chuck Giampa all scored an identical 115-113. Referee Joe Cortez had no problem controlling the action as both Morales and Pacquiao played professionally and did not employ dirty tactics.

DANCE

“I erred when I allowed him to dance and avoid my heavy blows,” Pacquiao said in Tagalog when pressed to recall the first of his three encounters with the Mexican heartthrob.
Pacquiao destroyed Morales in their next two meetings, the only trilogy in the Filipino’s career, winning by TKO in 10th on January 21, 2006 and KO in 3rd on November 18, 2006. Both massacres occurred at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas.
Prior to losing a unanimous verdict to Morales, Pacquiao’s two other previous defeats were clean knockouts inflicted by unheralded fellow Filipino Rusteco Torrecampo and Medgoen Singsurat of Thailand.
Pacquiao, then a skinny flyweight prospect, fell flat like a sack of potatoes in 3rd after being hit in the chin by Torrecampo’s powerful wallop in a 10-round non-title header in Mandaluyong City on Feb. 9, 1996.

VICTORIES

After chalking up 13 straight victories, Pacquiao again wiped the canvas with his face after being blasted by Singsurat, then nicknamed “3-K Battery”, in a gallant and failed bid to retain his WBC flyweight crown in Nakhon Si Thammarat, Thailand on September 9, 1999.
He had to leave the flyweight division and move up after the Singsurat debacle where he racked up 11 straight wins as a super bantamweight terror that included a spectacular KO win over the late Lehlo Ledwaba to claim the IBF super bantamweight diadem at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on June 23, 2001.
The controversial split decision loss to Bradley came 14 fights after his loss to Morales, winning 13 and drawing one against Juan Manuel Marquez on Nov. 12, 2011.
Aside from Morales, no boxer has beaten Pacquiao on points convincingly. Because of the gravity of pressure and force Pacquiao applies in all his fights, either his opponents end up snoring in the canvas or he is the one counting the stars after falling head first like in his December 8, 2012 duel against Marquez.

 
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Posted by on April 12, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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New Pacquiao-Bradley judge known to score a big margin

“If winning isn’t everything, why do they keep score?” Vince Lombardi

By Alex P. Vidal

The name Craig Metcalfe does not ring a bell among Filipino boxing fans familiar with personalities involved in officiating big time Las Vegas fights probably because he is based in Canada.
Metcalfe, a Canadian, is a last-minute replacement for the “ill” John Keane of Great Britain. A real estate broker in Alberta, Metcalfe will judge the Pacquiao-Bradley rematch on April 12 along with Glenn Trowbridge of Nevada and Michael Pernick of Florida. Kenny Bayless will be the third man in the ring.
Because of the controversy over the first fight, the Nevada State Athletic Commission agreed to assign two judges from outside Nevada. The WBO could only assign a supervisor.
When he was assigned to judge famous duels mostly involving WBC championships in the past, records showed Metcalfe gave margins by a mile to celebrity boxers.

FIRST TIME

The Pacquiao-Bradley rematch will be the first time in Metcalfe’s 15-year career as judge that he will officiate for two successive times in the gambling capital of the world. He is busy officiating bouts mostly in Canada. Last March 8, Metcalfe was back in Las Vegas when Saul Alvarez TKO’d Alfredo Angulo in 10th. When the fight was terminated, Alvarez was ahead by seven rounds in Metcalfe’s scorecard, 89-82. If the fight set for 12 rounds went the distance, there was no way for Angulo to chase Alvarez’s lead in Metcalfe’s ledger.
Alvarez is the more popular between the two courtesy of his 12-round majority decision defeat to celebrity Floyd Mayweather for WBC light middleweight and WBA super light middleweight crowns on Sept. 14, 2013. Incidentally, Metcalfe was a judge in the Mayweather-Alvarez setto held at the MGM Grand.
Of the three judges, it was Metcalfe’s score that caught the attention of fans with malicious minds. He scored a lopsided 117-111, while Dave Moretti had it 116-112 for Mayweather. Third judge C.J. Ross disagreed with them and submitted a draw, 114-114. Ross, a veteran of more than 30 world title bouts, was the same judge who scored an atrocious 115-113 in favor of Bradley in the first Pacquiao bout on June 9, 2012.

PERFORMANCE

Going back to Metcalfe’s performance in the Mayweather-Alvarez setto. The scorecard showed he had “no mercy” for Canelo, who was never in danger of falling down during the rumble. Many fans wondered if Ross saw the bout even, how in the hell could a fellow judge see a one-sided action when they were both watching and officiating the same pair of protagonists in the ring?
Also, when Vitali Klitschko halted Tomasz Adamek in 10th for WBC heavyweight title at the Stadion Miejski in Wroclaw, Poland on Sept. 10, 2011, Metcalfe’s scorecard was also a head-turning 90-80 at the time of the stoppage. He gave Klitschko almost a shutout score that would have rendered impossible Adamek’s efforts to chase with two rounds left.
Was it a mere coincidence that in all these championship clashes, Metcalfe showed apparent generosity for celebrity fighters like Alvarez, Mayweather and Klitschko by giving them kilometric leads? Pacquiao and Bradley are both also considered as celebrities. Will Metcalfe give weight to their rank in the galaxy of boxing stars? Or he will judge the fight according to their performance?

TEN FEET

There was one championship fight, however, that Metcalfe stood ten feet tall. This was when he scored 115-113 for Andre Ward, who retained his WBC/WBA super middleweight belts by unanimous decision against Carl Froch at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey on Dec. 17, 2011. His tally agreed with fellow judge John Stewart, who also scored 115-113. Third judge John Keane, the man originally assigned in the Pacquiao-Bradley rematch, had a terrible 118-110 also for Ward.
“Metcalfe is a good judge. We have no issue whatsoever,” Top Rank vice president Carl Moretti recently told ESPN.com.
If no knockout will happen, the fight will be decided anew on the scorecards. We will keep an eye on Metcalfe and his two colleagues.

 
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Posted by on April 11, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Pacquiao needs a samurai to bring down Bradley

“It is always wise to look ahead, but difficult to look further than you can see.” Winston Churchill

By Alex P. Vidal

Manny Pacquiao’s fiery eleventh hour assault against Timothy “The Desert Storm” Bradley in their first meeting on June 9, 2012 failed to convince judges Duane Ford and C.J. Ross, who scandalously awarded the WBO 147-lb title to the unbeaten black fighter from Palm Springs, California via 12-round split decision.
Both judges scored an identical 115-113 for Bradley to obscure Jerry Roth’s 115-113 in favor of the eight-time world champion, who plans to run for senator in the Philippines in 2016. In the eyes of both the experts and fans, Pacquiao was the clear winner.
Pacquiao (55-5, 38 KOs) got tired of chasing the elusive Bradley (31-0, 12 KOs) and “lost” in the last three rounds. Both ended the 12th and final round throwing wild punches.
I was at ringside at the MGM Grand from start until the 10th round. I hurriedly left my assigned seat (Floor “G” Row “F” #18) before the 11th round. By 11th and 12th stanzas, I was watching the fight inside the media center and saw a lopsided duel with Pacquiao landing most of the haymakers. I wanted to be the first get the official scorecards transmitted immediately to the media center.

WINNER

To my horror, Bradley, 30, was declared the winner by split decision. I pulled the first piece of paper that came out from the copier machine and downloaded it on my Facebook account. Thousands of “friends” shared it as the world exploded in outrage over the “highway robbery.”
Fans had expected a come-from-behind KO win for Pacquiao in the first Bradley duel but were ready to accept a decision when Pacquiao could not nail the lucky punch. But not a bum decision. They crucified the two judges, not Bradley.
Although Pacquiao, 35, has not scored a stoppage win since Nov. 14, 2009 when he snatched Miguel Angel Cotto’s WBO welterweight belt via 12th round TKO, he is no stranger to late round knockout victories. Pacquiao retired Oscar De La Hoya in 8th; halted David Diaz in 9th; demolished Jorge Solis in 8th; TKO’d Erik Morales in 10th in their rematch; stopped Marco Antonio Barrera in 11th; put away Nedal Hussein in 10th. They were some of his fiercest battles en route to become a ring legend.

BACK-TO-BACK

In their rematch on April 12, Bradley seeks to become the first fighter to score a back-to-back victory over the famed Pacquiao. His confidence boosted after rolling past Ruslan Provonikov (23-2, 16 KOs) and Juan Manuel Marquez (55-7, 40 KOs), Bradley increased muscles and posed for photographers in apparent copycat of Marquez, who did the same trick prior to knocking out Pacquiao in 6th last December 8, 2012.
The message Team Bradley wanted to impart was: “I’m willing to engage Pacquiao in a brawl and I won’t run away.” This could be meant to confuse Team Pacquiao which expects Bradley to again dance and avoid a head-on collision.
Nobody survived with Pacquiao in a phone-booth brawl except Marquez, whose one-punch demolition of Pacquiao was considered as a “lucky punch”. In order to beat Pacquiao, Morales, in their first meeting on March 19, 2005 also in MGM Grand, sprayed the Filipino superstar with blinding and dizzying jabs and confused him with consistent lateral movements from start to finish.

EXPOSED

No boxer has been very much exposed in Las Vegas than Pacquiao in as far as styles and weaknesses are concerned. Even those who have been vanquished have studied Pacquiao, but only a few of them have been given the privilege to face him again in a rematch and a trilogy.
Like in his previous bouts, Pacquiao is again under pressure to satisfy bloodthirsty fans with a knockout win. But given Bradley’s mental and physical preparations, it looks like the Filipino congressman will need to bring a samurai or revolver to fulfill this difficult mission assigned to him by fans baying for Bradley’s flesh and blood.
Bradley’s camp is aware of the danger their ward faces once the reigning WBO welterweight champion makes a mistake of forcing a KO win against the durable Pacquiao only because Bradley now looks like Incredible Hulk. Team Bradley is also aware that finishing the full route against Pacquiao is already half winning the bout — with or without “cooperation” of the judges.

 
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Posted by on April 9, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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