An Arizona spring-heated lineup led by two junior welterweight matchups takes place in Phoenix on Friday.
Leading the charge will be former welterweight and junior welterweight champion Tim “Desert Storm” Bradley.
Bradley will be behind the microphone as an analyst for the second time for TruTV, while undefeated Jose Benavidez (22-0, 15 Kos) meets Mexico’s Jorge “Maromerito” Paez (38-5-2, 23 Kos) and Antonio Orozco (21-0, 15 Kos) faces Emmanuel Taylor (18-3, 12 Kos) at US Airway Centre.
Once upon a time, Bradley erased every top junior welterweight in the world before moving up in weight. He knows a thing or two about the division.
“I know Benavidez. I had an opportunity to spar him a few years ago, Paez Jr. I don’t know much about. I know he comes from a fighting background,” said Bradley. “Paez had two or three fights with Omar Chavez. I know he won two of those fights. He comes from Mexicali. I know Benavidez is matched up tough. Paez ain’t no slouch.”
If you know Bradley, he’s a true student of the fight game. Whether it’s inside the gym counseling stablemates at Indio or ringside watching others fight, he spews ring wisdom gathered throughout the years. It’s wisdom from his father and various coaches, especially the Diaz brothers, Antonio and Joel, who worked his corner his entire pro career. It’s been a winning combination.
Bradley has already kicked into high gear for a pending match with WBA junior welterweight titlist Jessie Vargas of Las Vegas. They’ll meet in the boxing ring on June 27, at the StubHub Center in Carson, Ca. No title will be at stake but it’s a big money match.
“Jessie Vargas, he’s a really good talented young fighter. He’s an undefeated champion. He’s always game. Got that amateur pedigree. Always willing to perform. He’s willing to be a household name,” said Bradley about his matchup with Vargas. “It’s an opportunity to beat a fighter of my caliber. He’s a threat. Any of these guys, especially the young ones, are threats. They’re young and full of energy.”
Friday night, Bradley will be overlooking the new recruits for the 140-pound division. Being an analyst provides new challenges.
“It’s hard, man,” he says. “It’s tough. I like it a lot. I got to get comfortable in front of the camera and just speak. I just got to be myself. Once I be myself, everything will start flowing.”
Outside and inside the ring, Bradley will be flowing.