This coming Saturday night, Manny Pacquiao will face the unbeaten challenger Timothy Bradley. Most believe that Pacquiao will come out of that fight victorious. Some, on the other hand, say that this Saturday will bring the end of the Pacquiao reign, and a new champion will take his place.
I am not entirely sure how their fight contract was handled and compiled, but for the sake of a good discussion, let’s imagine that it did not specify a requirement of a rematch. Let's also imagine, for the same reason, that Bradley wins the fight, and is faced with an interesting decision: give Pacquiao a rematch or fight Floyd Mayweather Jr.
What do you think Bradley would, or should, do? What are the benefits and drawbacks of his two options?
The benefit of a Pacquiao rematch is that it would probably be a good way to solidify his win against the Filipino boxing sensation. After all, we can expect excuses from either Pacquiao or trainer Freddie Roach if Manny hypothetically underperforms. Beating Manny twice would reinforce Bradley's victory over Pacquiao. Also, rematches tend to be more lucrative, so it’s safe to assume that Bradley would be collecting a very healthy paycheck.
The negative aspect of a rematch is risking that very same win. A win against Pacquiao will always be a win. However, if the win is followed by a loss, it would definitely lose most of its value instantly, and the win might be labeled a fluke.
As far as fighting Mayweather Jr. goes, I think we can all agree that the financial benefit would be clear cut. Bradley would make more money than in any other fight he could possibly take on. A win over Mayweather Jr., in my own personal opinion, is a lot more impressive than a win over Pacquiao. Don’t get me wrong here, I am not implying that Pacquiao is any less of a historical figure in boxing than Floyd is. I am simply trying to convey that as far as characters go, Mayweather Jr. seems much more sly and impregnable than Pacquiao.
Beating Mayweather Jr. would be a bigger shock for most boxing fans.
Of course the drawback is that Mayweather Jr.’s style would be very frustrating for Bradley. Floyd can fight moving backwards, and can do that very well. Bradley comes forward, but not fast enough, and is not defensively sound when he does.
I simply wouldn’t give him any chance at all of beating Floyd.
A rematch with Pacquiao would be the safer choice, as it would provide a good financial result as well as a good chance at another successful night.