Timothy Bradley says he never told Bob Arum that he felt he'd lost to Manny Pacquiao, despite Arum's claims. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
Timothy Bradley has finally spoken up about something many of us have been wondering about the last few days. Bob Arum, who promotes Bradley and Manny Pacquiao, said after the fight that in the ring, before the announcement of the controversial split decision scores, Bradley told Arum he had done his best, but "couldn't beat" Pacquiao.
Arum also claimed that Bradley's manager Cameron Dunkin said he'd scored the fight for Pacquiao, which Dunkin rather furiously shot down as nonsense. Now, Bradley has decided to set the record straight, or at least beg to differ. He told The Boxing Lab that he didn't say anything of the sort:
"I never said that I didn't beat this guy. I just said I did my best. I wouldn't say that I couldn't beat him. Why would I say that? Especially when I felt I won. My trainer told me right after the fight that I beat him."
Bradley and Dunkin both disputing Arum's claims puts everyone in a bit of a pickle. I mean, either Arum lied about what they said, which seems pointlessly stupid to do, or they're lying about what they said, which makes this seem a lot more like an actual robbery than anything else has, maybe.
What can Arum really do here? He can't really go, "Yeah, you did say that," to either of them, because bottom line is he still promotes Bradley, and there's only so many times you can call him a loser before you start truly hurting the value of a guy you promote. And he can't really go, "Well, I made that up," because that would make him seem like a flat-out liar.
Maybe he can say he misheard them. Both. On totally different things? Well, I've heard worse tales from boxing promoters.
The Boxing Lab interview really is pretty good, though. I can't really help but feel bad for Tim Bradley here. I don't blame him for any of this, and he's not only done what anyone else would do in the aftermath, but he's also been complimentary of Pacquiao:
"I have been in the ring with faster guys but he is a great fighter. When he puts his punches together all of his punches are solid. There aren't any weak punches. He is a lot smarter than I thought he was."
It's hard for me to "hate on" a dude that describes an opponent that way, no matter what happened with the judges.