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No Combat Stress For Tim “Desert Storm” Bradley

BY David A. Avila ON October 02, 2013
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Bradley Marquez comm-shoot10-2-2013 1b5c7After years of remaining undefeated Tim “Desert Storm” Bradley now has to prove his last fight didn’t scatter his brains and leave symptoms of shell shock.

It never ends.

WBO welterweight titlist Bradley (30-0, 12 Kos) is set to fight Mexico’s Juan Manuel Marquez (55-6-1, 40 Kos), a prizefighter with more knockouts than the Palm Springs boxer has wins. But questions about his recovery twirled around like stars during a recent telephone press conference.

Is Bradley the same fighter?

“For me as a trainer, it’s always a concern. He was reacting pretty good, answering questions the right way,” said Joel Diaz, who has trained Bradley (seen in Chris Farina-Top Rank photo) for his pro career.

Diaz was talking about Bradley’s return to training after a grueling and mind numbing clash against Russian juggernaut Ruslan Provodnikov last March 16. During the fight the Palm Springs speedster often traded blows and absorbed more punches than seemingly all of his pro fights put together. Worries about Bradley suffering combat stress seemed a concern.

Bradley admitted suffering from dizzy spells and slurred speech after the fight. It was enough of a concern that he sought advice from friends.

“I know some guys in the NFL that got me some help,” said Bradley, adding that they recommended a doctor whose expertise is with concussions. “In Long Beach he assisted me and gave me some therapy work.”

Bradley spent months recuperating and staying away from the boxing gym.

“We’re back to normal now. My speech is not slurry no more. I never worry,” Bradley said about the experience. “I’ve got treatment for the last five months.”

On Bradley’s first day in the gym, on August 1, I happened to catch the welterweight working out for the first time. He looked much heavier and had a big beard and a lot of hair on his head, resembling Isaac Hayes with hair. As he moved through his routines he looked a little slower but it was understandable with the extra weight. Though heavier, he didn’t look fat. Though slower, he was still faster than most boxers.

Diaz agrees.

“I noticed a little bit of difference. He was a little off balance but he started getting better. He was a little bit heavy,” Diaz said.

Bradley finished his routine that day and walked up to me saying “come back in mid-September. Then see how I look. I promise you I’ll look a lot better.”

Revisiting Bradley

On Sept. 17, I visited again to see Bradley and the speed in his punches was blinding. I always found it amusing that many boxing pundits felt Bradley was slow until he dismantled several world champions and then beat Manny Pacquiao.

“He never gets credit,” said Monica Bradley, his wife, while holding their two-month old baby. “He works so hard.”

After the brutal affair with Provodnikov, many wondered if Bradley lost that extra tick in his reflexes. It’s a valid question, especially when there’s a history of fighters affected by similar wars. You never know.

Back in the 1980s when Roberto Duran was bludgeoned and eventually knocked out by Tommy “The Hitman” Hearns, many predicted the Panamanian fighter’s demise too. Instead, “Manos de Piedra” returned for many more fights including several more world title fights. He didn’t lose again by knockout due to punches for another 14 years.

Diaz thinks Bradley is ready even for the likes of Mexico City’s boxing wizard Marquez.

“He’s been getting hit really hard and he responded very good,” said Diaz, adding that one of the sparring sessions was with hard-hitting Lucas Matthysse. “His ability to move and his reflexes are very, very sharp.”

Are they sharp enough to beat the likes of Marquez?

“I’m going to whip his *** and I’m going to win the fight. I’m going to get in there and beat Marquez,” said Bradley, who was stirred by the lack of belief in his abilities. “That’s it. And the world is going to see it.”

Doesn’t sound like combat stress.

Bradley fights Marquez on Oct. 12 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas. HBO will televise the Top Rank event.

Comment on this article

TotoyBato says:

Stress could be positive or negative depending on what Tim Bradley is made of. Fear and Anxiety can either heighten the senses or shut it down. It's a fine line to tread but stress is needed for peak performance. Juan Manuel Marquez has proven himself to perform best when under tremendous stress. let's see what Tim Bradley is made of.

The Shadow says:

That's a big head, yo.

Radam G says:

Hehehe! I almost went there. But I guess if you have a big cranium, you have big, long doggs. TB is going to ram and bam Hulkquez. Ram that big-@$$cranium into him, and then Bambi away faster than a thief in the night. Holla!

Carmine Cas says:

Recovering from a concussion and head trauma is no joke and takes a lot of time and patience. He should be fine if he hasn't had too many in the past, and that is a big head, a nice target for Dinamita!

dino da vinci says:

This has all the makings of an above average fight.

Radam G says:

It will be a stinkfest. Hulkquez will not be able to catch Bambi to one shot him. The Cali Cranium Crusher is going to Bambi trot and then SUDDENLY KaBOOM! Ram shot Hulkquez! Hulkquez is gonna be dripping blood from one of his eyelids and from a cut between his hair pugs. So the Sin City crooks that be will go to the score and give Hulkquez a gift victory or draw. Holla!

dino da vinci says:

So let's see if I get this right. There will be blood, which usually forces a fighter to alter his fight plan (think sense of urgency). The recipient of the damage, when last seen damaged, called on his years of experience to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat, (Against your guy actually, if you yourself are not the Pacman. Might you be Radam Gordon Pacquiao III, hmmmm?) No. I'll go a step better. This, on paper anyway, shapes up to be a great fight. I see them doing it more than once actually. It works for both guys. Good paydays, and keeps both names in the mix for the lottery, if the road happens to go in that direction.

Hop says:

... a thief in the night


Hey, biblical reference! (1 Thessalonians 5:2)

kidcanvas says:

he will make marquez look like he's standing still . might even tko him

james pena says:

bradley will outbox out speed marquez al la mr mayweather sorry guys bradley wins in snozzer

Radam G says:

Ditto JP! Bradley will surely win in a snozzer. But will the three blind mice -- I judges -- see that? Bradley is going in the den of a thousand lions -- I mean Sin City of a million crooks. Holla!

amayseng says:

i think JMM pulls it out, at 40 and jacked and juiced he has enough left to beat bradley in a boring, slow paced fight.

JMM is a top technician and remains truly elite, even though turtled a bit, he now has one punch killing power that will keep bradley away or put him to sleep.

brownsugar says:

JMM .....for some folk he's jacked and juiced.... I just believe he's one of the most dedicated, determined professional boxers of this generation. The man is boxing royalty and the epitome of what it means to be an Aztec warrior. like BHop, and W. Klitschko he's disciplined to the extreme. And if you've ever lived more than a few decades you'll know there's no greater fountain of youth...no magic pill that yield better results than just being disciplined.

And there's no better way to get knocked out ...than walking into a CounterPunch your opponent has been waiting to deliver against a predictable style for a decade.

But taken into perspective....Bradley is almost a junior middleweight. He can't punch but he can move... and throw in combination.
Unless Bradley chooses to trade...he will benefit from his size and greater mobility.
Its Bradleys fight to lose.

JMM matched up well with PAC because they are the same size... But could your imagine JMM versus Keith Thurman or Tommy Hearns? While Bradley is neither... his advantage in size should prove to be JMM's undoing.

Bradleys size and physicality kept him in the fight against PAC ...
But JMM doesn't have the tools Manny did. To be effective against a bigger guy.
This time Bradley posesses the tool kit.

Radam G says:

I disagree and I know, B-Sug. New found phony concept of religion kept the Cali Cranium Crusher in the fight against Da Manny. That phony concept is now gone. Bradley will get toasted in a Fight ll. Holla!

Radam G says:

BTW, this size stuff is going OVERBOARD in this normally smart Universe. Size doesn't mean anything but maybe one percent, just as the amount of things that exist, and that we can see with the naked eye. There is a long, long HISTORY of smaller men whuppin' da-double-fudge hebejeebeez outta biggums since the beginning of TIME. Heavier weight divisions have been made to protect the biggums from so many arse thrashing.

Hey, TSS puglistic great scribes S-To, F-Lo and Aa-T, like always, do your deep-digging research and HOLLA da up and up actually of the really!

Danggit! Myths, make-believe and posturing with them gets OLD! Bring in the boxing GOLD! So on the weak jive of size, so many people who haven't ever been in da game -- or fully in it -- won't be SOLD!

A person can be too big to box. He loses coordination and the needed gravity by touching the fudging clouds and by being too dead weight as Boot Hill.

It is all about natural selection. The dinosaurs and the neanderthals got fudged up and KAYOED by the lions/elphants/camels/dogs/rats/cats/roaches/ants and the homo sapiens. Call a spade a spade. Don't hide behind make-believe in the shade, because then you are the self-victim of inattention blindness because of pig-headedless. Holla!

dino da vinci says:

BTW, this size stuff is going OVERBOARD in this normally smart Universe. Size doesn't mean anything but maybe one percent, just as the amount of things that exist, and that we can see with the naked eye. There is a long, long HISTORY of smaller men whuppin' da-double-fudge hebejeebeez outta biggums since the beginning of TIME. Heavier weight divisions have been made to protect the biggums from so many arse thrashing.

Hey, TSS puglistic great scribes S-To, F-Lo and Aa-T, like always, do your deep-digging research and HOLLA da up and up actually of the really!

Danggit! Myths, make-believe and posturing with them gets OLD! Bring in the boxing GOLD! So on the weak jive of size, so many people who haven't ever been in da game -- or fully in it -- won't be SOLD!

A person can be too big to box. He loses coordination and the needed gravity by touching the fudging clouds and by being too dead weight as Boot Hill.

It is all about natural selection. The dinosaurs and the neanderthals got fudged up and KAYOED by the lions/elphants/camels/dogs/rats/cats/roaches/ants and the homo sapiens. Call a spade a spade. Don't hide behind make-believe in the shade, because then you are the self-victim of inattention blindness because of pig-headedless. Holla!


Actually Rad, as dinosaurs go, I think it was a meteor that got them. Or was it a sea turtle, I don't remember which. But yes, big guys have a lot of body to defend. Every build, every style brings pros and cons with it.

Radam G says:

YUP! You are right, Dino. A giant meteor got their big, ole sorry-arses, because they didn't have skills to pay the bills. Giant arses cannot fight, think and survive like small ones. That is a hard fact. Bigger is not better unless you are talking gold, diamond, workable money and STEM. The bigger the build, the more cons and less pros. And that is science, not Radam G. That is why smaller in technology is able to carry more. Giant and fat are easier to see. This is why those not in da know associate it will being better or more deadly and/or more beneficial.

If I'm in the alley, and Shaq is to, who will a 280-pound, 6-foot-7 punk bully pick to fight? I -- of course. And I'd literally off him in about 10 seconds with two to 20 shots. I would destroy him with what Pinoys brought into boxing -- lateral movement and a form of "Rapido Realism Kali" and Panuntukan.

Now watch some posers, busters, haters and lazy-arse know nothings come after me. They don't know JACK about the various contributions of different ethnic groups to da game. Holla!

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