Unbeaten fighter Timothy Bradley enters Saturday night’s fight with Manny Pacquiao as 10/3 underdog, and punters backing the American will perhaps take most heart from the supreme physical shape the 28-year-old is in.
Bradley, who has yet to lose in 29 professional fights, is returning to welterweight to meet Pacquiao, after the latter’s continuous ascendency through the weight divisions.
Pacquiao has opted for an opponent weighing less than his 147 pounds for his second title defence running, despite only victoring in controversial circumstances last time, with many believing Juan Manuel Marquez was worthy of a points decision success.
In Bradley, he could meet an even tougher challenge, with the American fighter possessing a slight reach advantage over the champion, and looking to have developed well past the junior welterweight division he has long dominated.
That said, the 28-year-old must still come to terms with the variables that will come in a higher weight fight, such as being struck by a bigger opponent than he is used to.
The challenge of Pacquiao will also undoubtedly be the greatest of Bradley’s career, as he takes on a competitor widely renowned as the world’s best pound-for-pound fighter.
What could prove Bradley’s biggest advantage over his opponent however, is his tremendous physical conditioning.
At 28 years old, Bradley is in the peak years of his career, and has yet to absorb a great deal of sustained punishment during his fights so far.
Also, he has yet to be outworked in any outing to date, and proved against Lamont Peterson that he can match almost anybody in terms of punch volume if challenged to.
Whilst Pacquiao’s stamina remains mightily impressive meanwhile, recent signs have shown that the 33-year-old could be slightly declining as a competitor.
Those backing 10/3 Bradley to overcome his Philippine opponent should take most confidence from the American’s physical shape heading into Saturday’s fight.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.