Timothy “Desert Storm” Bradley (33-1-1, 13KOs) since first signing a promotional agreement with Top Rank back in 2011, has positioned himself into big money fights, PPV showings, and will enter a third fight with Manny Pacquiao in what many in the industry feel, along with some fans that he may just earn his first legitimate victory over Pacquiao this Saturday. Many in boxing like Bradley’s chances for his rubber match with Pacquiao, because of Manny’s long layoff and coming off a shoulder surgery, and with the way Bradley looked in his first fight with his new trainer in Teddy Atlas by dominating and knocking out slugger Brandon Rios last November.
Teddy Atlas a student of the legendary trainer Cus D’Amato took over the training duties for Bradley after Timothy parted ways with his longtime trainer Joel Diaz shortly after his fight with Jessie Vargas in a bout where Bradley was nearly knocked out. Following some sluggish performances, Bradley felt a change was needed and hired Teddy Atlas just before his bout with Rios and together produced Bradley’s best performance in quite some time, even recording a rare knockout.
Teddy prior to being hired to train Bradley was comfortable in his role of commentating for boxing shows on ESPN and stood clear from training fighters after feeling betrayed by the way things turned out with his last pupil in former Heavyweight titlist Alexander Povetkin.
However, Atlas had a change of heart after meeting with Bradley and spending time with his family and now will be entering one of his most significant fights as a trainer in preparing Bradley to top a legend and superstar in Manny Pacquiao.
In a recent interview with FighthubTV, Teddy Atlas spoke about his second camp with Bradley and also responded to Freddie Roach’s comments and if there is any animosity between each other.
“You hope you get to the same place, success,” said Atlas. “There’s a difficulty in this business, especially for the fighters. In this business, you only got one guy and you got to get it right.
“In other business, you got 11 guys. Not this business, there’s absolute finality to this; it’s one time, one person.
“We got it right for the Rios camp, but every camp is different. We had an extra week for this camp, but at the end of day I feel we got it right. But all that matters and all you guys that are going to care about is what happens on Saturday, that’s all that matters.”
Prior to the Rios fight, Atlas had mentioned to the media that he was feeling some pressure and felt some weight on his shoulders to get Bradley to perform. For this fight, the stakes are higher and perhaps Bradley’s legacy is on the line, so is Atlas feeling more pressure for this bout?
“It’s bigger because of what this fight means, this is everything for this kid (Bradley),” Atlas said. “For his history, for his legacy, for his family, for the things they went through, and for me and my family.
“This fight with an iconic fighter who is probably going away from the business, it’s the last chance to get it right and my responsibility is to help do that and I don’t want to screw it up.”
Teddy also responded to some of Roach’s comments about him and insists that there is no animosity with Freddie stemming from the situation with Michael Moorer because of the end result of Moorer’s first fight with Roach, a stoppage loss to Evander Holyfield in their 1997 rematch. Atlas just doesn’t feel the need to respond to some of Roach’s comments and feels this stage is for the fighters and not the trainers.
“It’s true Michael Moorer left for the rematch with Holyfield and went with Freddie. I have no animosity, what was the result of that fight?” Atlas asked.
“Listen all I care about is the responsibility to my fighter. He thinks differently, he thinks we should be talking about these things.
“I don’t think it should be about me, especially about me. It’s about the fighters, they’re the ones that take the risks, they’re the ones that step into the ring, they’re the ones god forbid that could get out of the ring with less of themselves than what they’re coming in with.
“They’re the ones that are important, definitely not me, that’s for sure and that’s why I don’t have anything to say about that stuff,” said Atlas.