Manny Pacquiao’s chief trainer Freddie Roach and Joel Diaz, his counterpart in the Timothy Bradley camp, both predicted their wards will pull off a knockout come their June 9 title fight.
Saying that all fights should end ideally via knockout, Roach averred: “I don’t see it going the distance.”
For his part, Diaz, who together with Roach, Pacquiao and Bradley appeared in HBO’s “Face Off” interview aired over the weekend, also vowed to “look for a stoppage.”
“We will get him out of there in the late rounds,” Roach said. “We’re training hard for this.”
Diaz countered saying no one trains harder than Bradley who will be ready to mix it up until the time he’s ready to end the fight.
Responding to Roach’s projection, Bradley, the unbeaten junior-welterweight champion out to end the Pacquiao’s reign as 147-pound kingpin, remarked, ”They don’t know, man. They really don’t know.”
“Come break down this wall,” he said, adding he felt he could beat Pacman, and called himself a wall because he cannot be broken.
Roach said they can break the wall. But Diaz said his ward gets stronger later in the bout and the only way to win over him is to be wise “and try to stop him early. My guy will be extra careful early.”
Pacquiao, meanwhile, said he only wants to give the fans a great bout, and that he’ll pray for Bradley and himself that no serious injury happens in their 12-round showdown.
“God bless you,” Pacquiao told Bradley.
Roach said Pacquiao has learned his lesson from his last fight against Juan Manuel Marquez and, this time, the eight-division belt-owner will come prepared to erase the stigma of that lackluster performance.
“Manny underestimated Juan Manuel Marquez in his last outing, so he wanted to make sure he was mentally charged this time around,” he asserted.
Asked by program host Max Kellerman what would happen if he gets buzzed early. Bradley retorted that he will stay in the game, and stay resolute.
“I want to feel the pain,” he said. “Bring it on, I’m up for the challenge, bring it on. Yes, there will be toe to toe trading,” Bradley said. “Chances will need to be taken.”
Bradley admitted though that getting a chance to fight Pacquiao is “an honor. I got to say, I am happy for the man that he will make upwards of million for the bout, but I really don’t want to hear fighters talk about what an honor it is to get a gig like this.”
“The gratification one feels can subconsciously seep in to how one fights, in my mind,” he noted. “Me and Pacquiao faced off, and treated the clash too much for too many rounds like a sparring match amongst friends.”
On who is better between Pacquiao and arch-enemy Floyd Mayweather Jr., Bradley said, “Pacquiao is number one, pound-for-pound, in the game. I don’t know. We have to see. Those two would have to square off to determine who is best.”
Bradley quickly added though that he wants to screw up that plan.