MANILA, Philippines — Despite his advanced age and mileage, Manny Pacquiao could still pose major problems for top pound-for-pound boxer Terence Crawford, according to former champion Timothy Bradley.
Pacquiao and Crawford have been reported to be in talks for a June fight in Abu Dhabi, though nothing has been confirmed yet with MP Promotions president Sean Gibbons also dismissing the news as “nonsense.”
“I got to say, that’s a mean name,” said Bradley on ESPN. “I’ve been 36 rounds with that guy (Pacquiao), and I’ve been over 100 rounds with Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford.”
“It was early in Terence’s career. I understand he’s gotten a lot better to where he was when I did spar him, but his tendencies are still the same,” he added. “And Manny Pacquiao, let me tell you, he loves, and I’m going to go ahead and spill it right now. I’m going to let you guys know, Manny Pacquiao loves when guys pull back, and that’s a problem.”
Bradley, who lost the last two matches of his trilogy with Pacquiao, also thinks that the Filipino legend being a “quick starter” who can still pack a punch could also make a difference against Crawford.
“You also know that Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford gets hit early, and he gets hit often early. Manny Pacquiao is a quick starter as well, and he still has that blazing left hand, that backhand that he has that possesses a massive amount of punching power,” he pointed out.
“So this is a dangerous fight. This isn’t one of those fights where you can say, ‘Well, Bud Crawford should win this fight hands down,’” added Bradley, who was re-signed by ESPN to a contract extension last January as its ringside analyst.
Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39 KOs), 42, hasn’t fought since winning the WBA (Super) welterweight title in a split decision victory over erstwhile unbeaten Keith Thurman in July 2019.
The 33-year-old Crawford, meanwhile, made quick work of Kell Brook in four rounds to successfully defend his WBO crown for the fourth time last November.
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