WBO junior welterweight titleholder Timothy “Desert Storm” Bradley has received the standby call to fight Manny Pacquiao on Thursday should Floyd “Money” Mayweather pull out of the mega fight with the Filipino super star due to demands for Olympic style drug testing.
It could be the best Christmas gift imaginable for the Palm Springs fighter.
“HBO thinks a fight with Timothy Bradley is a good action fight,” said Cameron Dunkin, who manages Bradley and numerous other top prizefighters. “They don’t think Malignaggi would be a crowd pleasing fight.”
Pacquiao’s refusal to agree to Olympic style drug testing rather than the traditional testing offered by Nevada State Athletic Commission has prompted Mayweather to possibly scuttle the mega fight planned for March 13, at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Though Malignaggi was first discussed, having Bradley as an alternative was suggested to HBO, said Dunkin adding that the network prefers the Palm Spring fighter’s attacking style.
Bradley loves the idea.
“I would love to fight the guy if Mayweather don’t want to fight. Any time, just let me know. It’s as simple as that,” said Bradley by telephone on Christmas Eve. “I’m willing to step in if they want to fight someone who is hungry and who really wants to fight.”
Malignaggi was first mentioned as an opponent, but according to sources HBO does not like the match up. That’s where Bradley comes into the picture.
Bradley’s dominating performance against Lamont Peterson nearly two weeks ago and previous battles against Kendall Holt, Junior Witter and Nate Campbell have suddenly boosted his visibility. His full attack style is another factor.
“I just want to fight the best in the world,” said Bradley who is co-promoted by Gary Shaw Productions and Thompson Boxing. “Money plays a factor but it doesn’t motivate me. Fighting the best motivates me.
Mayweather and Pacquiao were both guaranteed a minimum of $25 million to fight each other in a battle of the two best fighters Pound for Pound in boxing. In Bradley’s last fight that took place on Dec. 12 against Peterson, the Southern Californian made $300,000. It’s a huge jump in money and fighting ability.
And what about the drug test?
“I don’t see what the big deal is. Manny Pacquiao doesn’t have a history of taking illegal substances,” said Bradley. “That’s what the commissions are here for.”
Bradley says getting a shot at Pacquiao or Mayweather is a dream fight.
“It’s amazing because this is the fight I’ve always wanted my whole career: To get a chance at fighting the best fighter pound for pound in the world. I know in my heart I can compete with this guy,” Bradley said. “I know what makes him so great. I feel I have the talent that I have and with my speed and ability I can compete with anyone.”
In the next few days will it be Mayweather, Malignaggi or Bradley?