Timothy Bradley finally returns to the ring this March from his June 2012 decision victory over superstar Manny Pacquiao. His opponent, Ruslan Provodnikov is not at the name lever or skill level of his last opponent. Tim Bradley’s trainer, Joel Diaz was the latest guest on ThaBoxingVoice radio and he explained the decision making into taking this opponent instead of others who have been mentioned and others who bring more name and star value.
“How did we get to the Provodnikov fight? I don’t even know myself. Tim needs to get back in the ring and fight; it’s just debating back and forth with promoter. We all know there a lot of fighters that we can fight but I don’t why it’s so hard for people to work together,” Diaz told ThaBoxingVoice.com.
The rumors were rampant for Tim’s opponent. There was a mention of Lamont Peterson who Tim had defeated before. In hindsight, Diaz thinks they should have taken that fight instead.
“At the end of the day they offered Provodnikov. They offered Peterson back in December; maybe we made a mistake not taking it. Maybe we were excited coming out of the Pacquiao fight. Instead of celebrating, we’re hiding from people. People were treating us like trash; all we did was do our best.”
Diaz continued, “Tim went in and fought his best and he didn’t get knocked out like every other fighter he fight. We fought Manny Pacquiao; forget about the winning or losing part. At that level, we thought our performance would get us someone at that level. Who’s out there at that level?; a Mayweather or Marquez? No, they bring us back to Lamont, someone Tim already beat.”
Another name that was thrown around for Bradley for March was Cuban super featherweight Yuriorkis Gamboa, who himself had just returned from a long layoff last December. Last April, Gamboa was supposed to make a 2 division jump from 126-135 to fight Brandon Rios but pulled out because of a promotional issue. This time around, he would have to move up 3 weight classes to fight Bradley (130-147), because according to Diaz, Bradley wouldn’t be able to make the catch weight Gamboa requested comfortably.
“There was negotiations going on with Gamboa, everything was moving on with Gamboa, they said ok but the fight can’t be at 147, only at 143. Tim’s been out for 7 months going on 8 months. He gained quite a bit of weight to make 147 before. In that period of time for the Gamboa fight, Timothy won’t make 143, I mean he would make it but not with trouble. I guess Gamboa’s team said no. so that deal went down the drain.”
So with all those stalled negotiations, Diaz thought and stated, “We’re like ok, there’s nobody else. We waited, Tim needs to fight. At the end of the day they bring Provodnikov. We expected a Marquez or a Pacquiao rematch after walking out with the decision with Pacquiao. Something may come at this level but no, we’re going to fight the king of ESPN-Provodnikov. But we’re not taking him lightly. We got to keep that undefeated record and the title. Without that, Tim has nowhere to go. If he’s being treated like that with a title and an undefeated record, you can imagine the day he loses a fight.”
For Full Audio of this interview click here: http://thaboxingvoice.cogito24.com/floyd-mayweather-jr-vs-devon-alexander-ponce-de-leon-joel-diaz-thaboxingvoice-radio-t-v/9834