Manny Pacquiao will almost surely face Timothy Bradley, but perhaps not on June 9 as tentatively scheduled. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
With today's news that Floyd Mayweather Jr has been granted a conditional, one-fight license and will fight Miguel Cotto on May 5 in Las Vegas, the chances of seeing Manny Pacquiao face Timothy Bradley were elevated somewhere between 80 and 100 percent, but Pacquiao adviser Michael Koncz says nothing is set for those two just yet.
It's looking like Manny Pacquiao will give young gun Tim Bradley a crack at it on June 9. But Pacman advisor Michael Koncz told me that foe and date is "not confirmed yet."
Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38 KO) is tentatively set to return on June 9, which would have been the date for a Miguel Cotto rematch (obviously not happening now). Top Rank could push that back a few weeks in an attempt to not saturate the market with too much big-fight boxing lumped together.
Bradley (28-0, 12 KO) has seemed to emerge, Woods says, as the favorite potential opponent for Pacquiao among diehard boxing fans. With Juan Manuel Marquez probably having talked himself out of a fourth fight with Pacquiao, and he and Lamont Peterson potentially looking to fight each other, Bradley may simply be the only real option for Manny to fight in June (or July) -- and really, that's not a bad option. Bradley is a tough out for anyone, and no one's gotten him out to date.
At 28, Bradley is in the prime of his career and has beaten top fighters, including Lamont Peterson and Devon Alexander.
There's really no doubt, I don't think, that Pacquiao will be facing Bradley. The date might not be June 9, but there just isn't anyone else left unless Marquez changes his mind about fighting in Nevada.