Pacquiao fighting to win back fans in Bradley rematch

By Don Tagala, ABS-CBNNorth America Bureau

Feb. 7, 2014

NEW YORK – With unfinished business to settle, two years after their highly controversial split-decision fight, Manny Pacquiao, who lost to welter weight champion Timothy Bradley, will be back in the ring in April in a “Fight for Redemption” rematch.

“I’d start taking it easy on my opponents if I knew I was leading in points” Pacquiao said. “This time around, I need to make sure it’s a decisive win–decisive and convincingly.”

“If Pacquiao loses this fight, it’s going be the end of the road for him,” Bradley said for is part. “I continue on and go.”

Bradley says he never got the recognition he deserved for being one of the elite few who defeated the Pacman, because of the controversy.

“Redemption here is the most important thing,” Bradley added. “I think we’ve got to get it right. We want the fans, the public to really see who really won that first fight.”

Even Pacquiao knows it’s his last stand. Losing this rematch could take away his elite fighter status and bring down his market value.

Pay-per-view (PPV) buys for Pacquiao fights normally rake in a million dollars. Those were cut nearly in half during his last fight in Macau against Brandon Rios, after he lost to Juan Manuel Marquez in 2012.

Top Rank promoter Bob Arum says this is one of the reasons why the Pacquiao-Bradley sequel is back in the United States.

“The United States is a big pay-per-view market, and we had to reintroduce Manny to the United States,” the veteran promoter said. “I think it would have been too much of a hit for Manny not to have done this fight in the United States.”

Pacquiao fought in Macau to escape the punitive US federal income tax rate of nearly 40 percent as compared to 12 percent in Macau.

Arum says while Uncle Sam takes so much more, fighting in the US is good for Pacquiao’s image.

“I’m happy to fight in America,” Pacquiao said. “There’s no problem if they tax. You can get a rebate anyway. It’s better here because you can get a tax refund.”

In a press conference in New York Thursday, after a day of ticket sales for the April 12 fight at the MGM Las Vegas, Arum says the Pacquiao-Bradley sequel is a rematch made in heaven.

He says it’s 70 percent sold out, and they’re expecting to sell out in the next two weeks.

You may contact Don Tagala at don_tagala@abs-cbn.com for more information.

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