For the second-straight fight headlined by Filipino wrecking machine Manny Pacquiao controversy surrounds the outcome of the fight – Last November he narrowly defeated Mexican knockout artist Juan Manuel Marquez in their third meeting.
Tonight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena Pacquiao put his World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight title on the line against unbeaten WBO light-welterweight champion Timothy Bradley Jr. and the final result left millions across the globe stunned.
It seemed that questions of the 33-year-old southpaw missing a step were put to sleep early as he took control of the fight and didn’t let up visibly rocking Bradley on several occasions. While Bradley was able to land offence on the welterweight kingpin Pacquiao was meeting him at every turn.
Their back-and-forth title fight came to a close with most coming to the conclusion that Pacquiao was just too much for the 28-year-old Californian but we were all mistaken. Well, according to the judges at least.
Judge Jerry Roth was the only judge who had it 115-113 for Pacquiao while C.J. Ross and Duane Ford both gave the nod to Bradley with scores of 115-113.
It’s no secret that boxing has fallen greatly since their glory days – Tales of corruption and too many championship belts ultimately made most step away from the sweet science leaving Pacquiao and his rival Floyd Mayweather Jr. the only big-money stars remaining in the four-sided ring.
While in the short term this looks to be a catastrophe and a major black eye to the sport in the end it will turn out to be anything but.
The HBO pay-per-view will ultimately be a success with a large margin of the population willing to fork out the cash to watch Pacquiao fight but only a handful of boxing fanatics brought this fight for Bradley.
Pacquiao was running out of viable options and the days were limited before the public quits throwing down their hard earned dollars on an opponent not named Floyd Mayweather.
Controversy always creates cash, when Bradley and Pacquiao inevitably meet again on pay-per-view it will be a significant jump in buys since the North American pop culture will be more familiar with the dual-division titlist.
The key issue brought up amongst boxing fans is whether this setback, the fourth blemish on the record of “Pacman” will lessen the chances Pacquiao vs. Mayweather going toe-to-toe in the squared circle? The answer is no.
While wins and losses mean more in boxing than any other combat sport with cloud of controversy surrounding it there won’t be a lessened interest to see these two meet, provided that he can notch a victory against Bradley down the line.
Pacquiao’s promoter Bob Arum will be doing backflips behind closed doors tonight as this might be a loss on his top fighters record but his wallet will be significantly fatter when all is said and done.