Bradley Beats Provodnikov In A THRILLER

BY Michael Woods ON March 16, 2013

fbdestacada bradley3162013You didn't hear anyone, anywhere, predicting that the main event fight between Tim Bradley and Ruslan Provodnikov at the Home Depot Center in Carson, CA on Saturday night could be a fight of the year candidate.

It was, bigtime.

Bradley got hurt in the first, second sixth and 12th, badly, but only went down, officially, in the final round. To Bradley's immense credit, he somehow shook off the hard clean blows, and somehow, we went to the cards: Denkin and Cantu had it 114-113, Caiz had it 115-112, for Bradley.

I was too excited to score round by round, but a case could be made that the "loser" deserved to win three rounds 10-8, so the mathmeticians need to be called in. I say we let it get sorted out in a rematch. Would Bradley, the "name" guy, agree to that? Probably not, he has easier fights for better money to do...But the man is a warrior, so maybe we could be pleasantly suprised.

Bradley went 347-1000, to 218-676 for the "loser." Bradley told Max Kellerman after that he was concussed in some round, not sure when. He said he was dizzy right then. Ruslan told Max that he thought he won. "Everybody saw what I did in the ring," he said. Ruslan said he didn't feel Ruslan's punches.

Bradley (29-0 entering; age 29; 146 1/2) went to 159 and Ruslan (22-1 with 15 KOs entering; age 29; 146 1/2) went to 150 pounds on the night of the fight.

The Siberian-born Ruslan said in pre-fights interviews that as a kid, he loved to fight. He said everyone in his town watches when he fights. Growing up, his family ate off the fat of the land and he didn't see packaged food for awhile. Bradley still seems emotional at the disrespect he got after "beating" Manny Pacquiao. He also gained about forty pounds after the "win."

In the first, Bradley got knocked down but the ref ruled it a slip. He was hurt by an overhand right and he went to his knee. Trainer Joel Diaz told him after to be smart. Ruslan, grinning, threw bombs, and came forward. Bradley was out on his feet for the last part of the round in a crazy round two. Left hooks hurt Bradley badly.

In the third, Ruslan rested some. Tim got busier, and Ruslan kept smiling and sticking his tongue out. In the fourth, a right hand landed after Bradley threw four jabs. Tim scored with a nasty uppercut with a minute left. Freddie Roach called for a left feint-right over the top after the round.

In round five, Bradley boxed smarter, and the Siberian had slowed down. In the sixth, Bradley's left hooks to the body were nasty, as they were in the fifth. A left hook hurt Tim but he stayed on his feet, barely.

In the seventh, Tim moved a lot. His trainer had barked at him to be smarter, and not trade.

In the eighth, Tim again moved more. He popped a jab, moved left and right and Ruslan wasn't able to adapt. Roach told Ruslan to get busy, and said he ate too much in that round.

In round nine, we saw blood on Ruslan, from his left eye. It had opened up in the first half and was staunched. He was hurt but kept throwing bombs himself, with both hands.

In the tenth, Roach said he was close to stopping the fight, talking to Max Kellerman. Bradley moved and kept the distance to his liking mostly. Roach told Ruslan to try for the KO or he'd end the fight. In the 11th, Bradley forgot to move, to fans' delight. Ruslan heard Freddie and was quite busy.

In the 12th, Bradley moved, then stood his ground and traded. A left hook hurt Tim with 55 seconds left, and then a right damaged him more. He took a knee as the clock ticked down. The bell sounded before Ruslan could get on him.

Check back for David Avila's ringside report.

Comment on this article

Radam G says:

Hehe! SouthPaul, you are crazy. TB is still lookin, quite dazy. We need another wheelchair. Hahaha! Forget the afterfight news conference. Holla!

ali says:

Don't know how Pac didn't knocked out Bradley that ninja is wild a$$ hell.Provodnikov vs Rios would easily be a fight of the year candidate

Radam G says:

Well! Amayseng! I'm already hearing Team Provodnikov's protest to overturn the decision or call it a no contest for the "missed knockdowns."

Poor Bradley! He is the Republican Herman Cain 9-9-9 man of boxing. Hehehe! Bradley's stock dropped even more. Dude just can't get respect. Maybe he's Rodney Dangerfield. Hahaha! Hollywood! Holla!

brownsugar says:

Most entertaining fight I've ever seen involving a welterweight named Bradley..

But what would you expect for a challenger that comes from an environment so severe he never saw packaged food until he was old enough to read at the second grade level... or had any concept of what Summer is.

I said this would be a war... but it was even more than a war. It's an early candidate for FOTY.
Bradley has earned his Redemption and Provodnikov has made his formal introduction to the BIG Stage.

brownsugar says:

There are no losers in this fight unless you consider the physical trauma the both endured.
This was the type of fight that scars the very soul.
And elevates the spirit.

the Roast says:

This was a very good fight, a ton of heart shown by both fighters. Bradley won but he was nearly stopped 3 or 4 times by a limited tough guy from Russia. There could have been two knockdowns in the first and second round but that is up to the interpritaion of the referee. Bradley is on borrowed time either way. He is a knockout waiting to happen.

SouthPaul says:

If I were Victor Ortiz I'd be on the phone in between dance practice having my representatives doing their best to line me up a return showdown with Tim Bradley.

brownsugar says:

This was a very good fight, a ton of heart shown by both fighters. Bradley won but he was nearly stopped 3 or 4 times by a limited tough guy from Russia. There could have been two knockdowns in the first and second round but that is up to the interpritaion of the referee. Bradley is on borrowed time either way. He is a knockout waiting to happen.

Bradley could go after the winner of Malignaggi vs Broner.
Bradley gained 6 MILLION BUCKs and 40lbs after a 1 year layoff.
It will be interesting to see how long he can remain hungry. (For boxing)
And if he can possibly resist the temptation to brawl.

stormcentre says:

This was a very good fight, a ton of heart shown by both fighters. Bradley won but he was nearly stopped 3 or 4 times by a limited tough guy from Russia. There could have been two knockdowns in the first and second round but that is up to the interpritaion of the referee. Bradley is on borrowed time either way. He is a knockout waiting to happen.

"Knockout waiting to happen". That's good.

stormcentre says:

Wow, I was pretty sure that Ruslan Provodnikov was going to come out strong and look to engage Bradley in exchanges, but I didn't expect him to do so well.

The difference between what I expected and observed; I have to put that down to Provodnikov's determination, and Bradley's lack of KO power.

Good fight.

"The difference between what I expected and observed; I have to put that down to Provodnikov's determination, and Bradley's lack of KO power". . . . . . . . . or perhaps my own judgment!!!!

If you can't criticize yourself!!!!!

stormcentre says:

Don't know how Pac didn't knocked out Bradley that ninja is wild a$$ hell.Provodnikov vs Rios would easily be a fight of the year candidate

Absolutely; Rios & Provodnikov would be a barnstormer.

jzzy says:

Great Fight, Ruslan's stock goes way up. Bradley was exposed again, heart and chin but suspect skills and power at this level. Decision was questionable. Pacman, Marquez and Rios are salivating at the prospect of facing Bradley.

Radam G says:

Ditto, jzzy! Bradley has definitely been exposed. And it is a shame that his nuthuggers and Pac-haters are blinded to real-time, real-life hard reality. Wising and hoping and believing that Bradley is a superstar in the making won't get 'em far. Holla!

deepwater says:

Two great fights. Vargas really impressed me.bradley finally went for it and let it all hang out. Bradley earned some fans. Thought the Russian looked like a drooling ax murderer maniac that won the fight or it could be a draw at best but Bradley didn't win

amayseng says:

is bradley the luckiest man on earth or what?
although he did demonstrate fantastic heart and fight,
this win does worse for him than the pacman win.
now he will be viewed, as he is on other sites, as a guy who yet got another decision and special treatment.
missed knockdowns...
the ropes holding him up

he is out on his feet for half of round one and round two, yet didnt get scored 10-8 from the judges...

i enjoyed it, ruslan will get better opportunities,

but bradley will get shelved again...
no one wants to see him, he wasnt exciting offensively, he was exciting to watch get staggered all over the ring all night.

bradley wont take the ruslan rematch..

and peterson and others will get him out of there..

i was screaming, just as my dad did to me, got to the body ruslan, go to the f'in body!!!!!!!

DaveB says:

That should have been a knockdown in the first round but the ref missed the knockdown. There was also some pushing going on which is what fighters are taught to do. The ref doesn't always call it if there too much pushing down on the opponent. That worked against him. The ref also doesn't have the convenience of slo mo replay, or replay at all. The second round could have been called as a standing eight, not sure if that was allowed in this fight, but Bradley was answering back so there was no need for that. I thought Bradley did win regardless because he won all those middle rounds. The problem with Bradley is that he doesn't have power and he elects to trade with these guys. Imagine if Ali had of traded with Liston, Shavers, Foreman and Lyle even with his great chin he most likely would have been knocked out. Shavers almost knocked him out as it was as did Frazier in the first fight 11th round. If Bradley stays on his bicycle and choses his spots like Ali and Holmes he would have a much brighter future but with this present style he will end up like Matthew Saad Muhammad. The fans will love you, the HBO broadcast team will love you but the his future after boxing won't be so good. I see a lot of the top guys knocking out Provodnikov. Too slow, gets hit too much, power puts him out.

brownsugar says:

I like what you said's human nature to either run...beg for mercy.... or fight back when your hurt... the best boxers have the ability to override their natural tendencies when this happens just like they have the ability to resist the urge to blink at incoming punches... Bradley definitely came into the fight riding a wave of emotion last night. However it was almost his undoing.
If he didn't suffer to much too much damage yesterday he'll probably look better on the next one.

DaveB says:

Thanks B-Sug, You have a good balanced view. Bradley needs to back off his brawling tendacies and fight smart. If he can learn more discipline like his trainer was instructing him to do he will do very well. Either you have power or you don't, no shame in that. He has a good chin and guts but there is no need to test them all the time. Like Foreman said when he was young - I hope that is a question that is asked about me when I retire. Did George Foreman have a good chin. Well we know that Foreman had a good chin because it was tested but his point was well taken, he didn't want to test it to find out. Bradley will do well to not test his so much. I really don't know how he and Sergio Martinez fought back so hard in their respective fights when both were clearly out on their feet. Truly amazing. Stick and move is the name of the game though.

Carmine Cas says:

I agree with Dave, regardless of the two possible 10-8 rounds, I think Bradley still won. He outboxed the Russian in the middle rounds. He'd be wise just to stick to boxing instead of brawling, he has enough power to keep his opponents off of him but that's it. Bring on the pacquiao rematch

ali says:

Dave u made alot of great points but Bradley just ain't a stick and move type of guy. Yeah he can do it from time to time but I don't see him ever sticking to it a whole fight. I don'tunderstand how a fighter with no power basically no D and throws wild punches can still be undefeated after fighting so many soild fighters. (confused)

Radam G says:

He is undefeated because of good managing ad matching. And, of course GIFTS when the system wanted to use him. He's a modern-day Primo Canera with the same size big-arse feet and head. And dark forces are ever busy with da shady business. But at end using of Tim Bradley, the dark bytches will throw him to the wolves as they did the other stiff almost a 100 years ago.

The Seberian Rocky PROVED that TB is easy to potshot. By year's end, the dark powers and seedy boxing will treat him as a dropshot. They've alread fringed him into being a crackpot. Holla!

DaveB says:

Then he is not a disciplined fighter. He is only disciplined to get into good condition.

the Roast says:

It was an unexpected great fight. I'll take it! I'll take it over last weeks Hopkins fight anytime. Much more fun to talk about near knockdowns, punches landed, and close finish than to talk about footwork, clinches, and feints. No major fights next weekend but then we get the Rios-Alvarez rematch. Bring the vilence! Life is good!

Radam G says:

I'm with the footwork, clinching and feinting. It is science, art and poetry to that. Bradley fighting is like a caveman with a suspect chin, feather punches and year-round Santa Claus officials given him gifts. But I ain't hatin' him. He keeps syet going on. And I live love excitement and its cousin O-P-P! Y'all know me. Hehehe! Holla!

Shoulder Roll Defense says:

Tim Bradley has a heart the size of Texas

Shoulder Roll Defense says:

Tim Bradley has a heart the size of Texas. His fight with Ruslan is the fight of the year so far. I don't care for Tim's style and I agree with the consensus opinion that he lost the Pac-Man fight. However, you have to respect him because he has a lot of heart and gives 100% every time he steps inside the ring. Freddie Roach is a overrated trainer at this point in his career. His corner instructions are poor to say the least.
Freddie failed to emphasize the importance of going to the body. Bradley was hurt on numerous occassions, but Ruslan never went to the body and was primarily head hunting. Ruslan should have been firing 3s (hooks) to the body and the head. Ruslan would have ended the fight in the first round of if he had gone to the body. Also, I can't name a current Freddie Roach fighter that has solid defensive skills. Ruslan isn't going to last long if his face is getting busted up by light punching fighters such bas Bradley.

amayseng says:

I agree SRD
Bradley had heart and no quit.
However in the PAC fight he looked like he quit half thro as he ran and showed little intention to go for it.
He learned his lesson and showed fantastic fight in this fight .
I'm with u, I was yelling all fight to go the the body.
Ruslan looked much better than he had displayed in his prior bouts.
Roache had him polished and skilled. But lacked his body attack for sure.
As for Bradley, another fight and now looks worse for another gift decision.
Sure he boxed and won some convincing rounds, but he was once again given
special treatment and wasn't scored against appropriately.

stormcentre says:

Good comments right there SRD & Amayseng.

Roach probably doesn't know defence (enough to teach it). Lord knows he didn't use it very much himself.

Perhaps that's why he likes Ruslan; as he loves to catch punches with his face all night. Someone else here commented that Ruslan, at times, looked like an axe murderer, and I agree with that. The guy looks seriously hell-bent on permanently hurting someone once he starts swinging.

But yes, Ruslan for all his potential - particularly whilst he ploughs through and overwhelms opponents - will eventually get busted up and KO'd when/if he meets someone that can bang as well as "slip n slide". For now though, he comes on pretty strong.

I'd like to see Provodnikov in with Kahn, just to see how much he could back-pedal without falling over. Actually, that would almost be a boxing-experiment re-defining how well/much someone can fight whilst both fearing for their life and running backwards.

No, seriously Matthysse, Maidana, Rios or Garcia would be interesting; in with Provodnikov.

However, until he gets a title or in serious contention, and particularly after his powerful showing with Tim; Ruslan will most likely be seen as a big risk, small reward, punching-machine opponent with excellent punch resistance - for most.

I do feel a bit sorry for Bradley though. I mean he gave it all, left his heart in there, and we're still giving him a hard time.

Not many guys would have kept going and fought gamely the way Bradley did, particularly when it seemed he was going to get KO'd. He most likely thought that because he did go to the trenches and dig deep, rather than play it safe and box; he would win more fans. I think Roach was successful in getting inside his head before the fight with his comments about Tim "running".

And yes, Provodnikov should have worked the body of Bradley a bit more in order to keep him hurt; but then Ruslan has always been a bit of a head hunter - particularly once he knows he's in a war.

Good fight though.

deepwater says:

Wonderful fight. Bradley fought for his life and came back from the dark room. The Russian was terrific in his pursuit .he took too much but he smiled and drooled every time . Nothing bad about the fight. Bradley went up in my book.he should retire and count his money because he is at the end. The Russian destroyer likes to get punched which is fun to watch but makes a short career

amayseng says:

good point deepwater, the russian loved it, he is like a cousin of mine, punching him in the face is like pushing the start button on an *** whoopin machine....
he was getting fired up in there...
he does need to move that head though and go to the body...

i think he looked pretty sharp and polished from what work freddy did with him....
much better than fnf's

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