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Timothy Bradley: Standing There and Trading Was Idiotic

by David P. Greisman

The best fights for the fans are not always the best fights for the fighters themselves. And so while Timothy Bradley might have gained many more fans after his brutal war this past Saturday with Ruslan Provodnikov, the bout didn’t at all follow the strategy that had been planned.

“I learned that I am my own worst enemy. Standing there and trading with a big puncher was an idiotic move,” Bradley wrote Wednesday in a chat hosted on ESPN.com. “I really don't know [why] I did it, I really don't. I guess I had to do what I had to do. The game plan was to box him, but I didn't do it. I wasn't listening to my corner. I have to work on my defense a little more, and I'm my own worst enemy. I’ve always said I’m going out swinging.”

Yet he had started out swinging, too, which left him more vulnerable to getting hit early and often, hurting him and dragging him into an extended battle with a heavy-punching Provodnikov.

“Every time he hit me, he rattled me,” Bradley wrote at one point.

“It was an unbelievable fight, man,” he wrote at another point. “A lot of the things that happened, I don’t even remember.”

Bradley demonstrated as much in a post-fight interview with Max Kellerman on Saturday night, when he told Kellerman that he couldn’t remember what he had said to the HBO analyst just seconds earlier.

With a few days to recover, Bradley, who improved to 30-0 with 12 knockouts and 1 no contest, said he has watched video of the bout perhaps nine times.

“It was an easy fight that I made hard for himself,” he said. “[D]efinitely the hardest fight of my career. I’ve never taken this much punishment in my life.”

He was able to win by a very close unanimous decision, with scores that very easily could have instead been a draw or a win for Provodnikov had the referee ruled a couple moments in the first round (when Bradley went to the canvas) and second round (when Bradley appeared to be held up by the ropes) as knockdowns — or had the judges opted to score those rounds 10-8 for Provodnikov even without official knockdowns.

“I never thought I had it won, ever,” Bradley wrote. “There was not one point in the fight I thought I had it won. When you're concussed or damaged, you just don't know. I lost track of how many rounds I won and how many I didn't win. That's why I asked my corner if I was winning the fight, so I knew if I had to step it up. I never felt I was winning, I felt I was losing the fight.”

He noted that he received a negative CT scan at the hospital and said he will fight again this year — and will preferably fight twice more in 2013. He left the door open for a second meeting with Provodnikov, though he said that decision depended on what his handlers thought.

“I'll fight a rematch every day of the week,” Bradley wrote. “But I focus on my team, my promoters and manager. If they say they want a rematch, then I'll do it.”

David P. Greisman is a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow David on Twitter @fightingwords2 or send questions/comments via email at [email protected]

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by BTTAG145 on 03-21-2013

Bradley vs Marquez should be next for the title of Pacquiao's biological daddy.

Comment by ukalltheway on 03-21-2013

he got slammed early im not buying he wanted to trade to show he can go toe 2 toe with someone. game plan went out the window fair play to the guy it was balls to the walls stuff :boxing:

Comment by KiloTeague on 03-21-2013

[QUOTE=Rapid Counter;13168102]Basically everything that is wrong with NSB can be summed up in these 2 posts. I wish posters like these would just f**k off![/QUOTE] Couldnt agree more. A fight should be stopped when the the conclusion is already forgone,…

Comment by Rapid Counter on 03-21-2013

[QUOTE=mrpizza-nd_beer;13167598]The wheelchair champ is now the whiny champ. There has to be something really superhuman he had to endure just to win... 1. I broke my feet 2. I was concussed 3. I did not follow my fight plan 4.…

Comment by Boxing18 on 03-20-2013

idiotic strategy for that fight, but possibly great career move. bradley won a lot of fans over, myself included.. he is a true badass. how do you keep fighting when you're that dazed? keep the ref from calling the fight…

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