Unbeaten Tim Bradley, criticized for rejecting a junior welterweight unification showdown with England's Amir Khan, said made the right choice and wants to fight Khan at some point.
Bradley spoke while promoting his World Boxing Organization title defense on November 12 at Las Vegas against Cuba's Joel Casamayor on the undercard of Filipino icon Manny Pacquiao's welterweight matchup with Juan Manuel Marquez.
Bradley, 27-0 with 11 knockouts, hopes an impressive performance will give him a chance for a big-money fight against Pacquiao, but denies that he ducked Khan, the World Boxing Association and International Boxing Federation champ.
"A part of me wanted to get in the ring and do what I wanted to do but I had a plan," Bradley said. "If I was to have fought Amir Khan and beat him, I don't think it would have done anything for my career."
That's because Bradley was feuding with ex-promoter Gary Shaw after a January victory over Devon Alexander. Bradley signed with Bob Arum's Top Rank, Pacquiao's promoter, earlier this month and would not mind seeing Khan now.
"If I was to fight Amir Khan through Top Rank I think it would be huge," he said. "People will see this fight. They will say this guy should fight the top guys in the world.
"Sitting back and thinking about it, we made the right choice (not to fight Khan). I've never had an opportunity to fight on a huge card like this."
Bradley shrugs off the notion he took the easy way to put himself among Pacquiao's potential foes by avoiding Khan, 26-1 with 18 knockouts, and a reported $1.5 million showdown to decide an undisputed champion.
"That don't bother me at all. Criticism don't pay the bills," Bradley said. "One day Amir Khan and me will get in the ring. We will settle it then.
"He can't move without me. I don't need him. He needs me. I don't really care what Amir Khan thinks or what people say about me. When the time is right, Amir and I will settle our differences in the ring."
It won't be soon. Khan defends his titles against American Lamont Peterson at Washington on December 10 and like Bradley is looking to move into the welterweight division, where Pacquiao and unbeaten Floyd Mayweather await.