By Keith Idec
When Timothy Bradley tells trainer Joel Diaz he’ll become the fighter to finally defeat Floyd Mayweather Jr., if he ever gets the chance, Diaz feel as though he has no choice but to believe Bradley.
Diaz learned long ago, like a lot of others have found out more recently, that doubting Bradley isn’t wise.
“Not too long ago, he came to me and said, ‘Coach, would you believe me if I tell you I can beat Mayweather?,’ ” Diaz said. “I said, ‘Yeah.’ He goes, ‘Coach, I dial him in. I wake up in the middle of the night, two in the morning, and I watch videos of Mayweather. Coach, I’ve got him down. I can beat this guy. I know every move he makes.’ And if my fighter tells me he can do it, I have all the faith in this guy. He has never failed. Every time he tells me something, [when it’s over] he says, ‘I told you, Coach.’ ”
Bradley (31-0, 12 KOs, 1 NC) isn’t a puncher and isn’t considered an elite technician, yet the WBO welterweight champion has defeated nine current or former world champions over the past 6½ years. The Palm Springs, Calif., native began training camp recently for his April 12 rematch against Manny Pacquiao (55-5-2, 38 KOs), whom most media members and fans believe beat Bradley in a June 2012 bout Bradley won by split decision at MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
The odds of Bradley boxing Mayweather (45-0, 26 KOs) appear long, unless Bradley parts ways with promoter Top Rank Inc., which signed Bradley to a contract extension recently. But if that night ever arrives, no one will need to convince Diaz his fighter can beat boxing’s biggest star.
“I have never doubted him,” Diaz said. “Since we’ve been in this together, going to England and fighting Junior Witter, he comes to me and says, ‘Coach, I’m going to beat this guy. I promise you. I swear to you, I’m going to beat him.’ And every time he tells me that, he makes it happen. When he fought [Juan Manuel] Marquez, he said, ‘I’m going to beat this guy, no problem. I’m going to beat him, no problem, I guarantee you. I never fail.’ He did.”
Keith Idec covers boxing for The Record and Herald News, of Woodland Park, N.J., and BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing. Tags: Timothy Bradley , Floyd Mayweather Jr.