The Pacquiao vs Bradley fight results became a big joke with a controversial split decision on Saturday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena where unbeaten Timothy Bradley of the USA defeated Manny Pacquiao of the Philippines, ending the Filipino ring icon’s run of 15-fight winning streak and losing his World Boxing Organization welterweight title.
Pacquiao appeared to dominate the entire fight and seemed to land more and harder punches than Bradley, but when the scorecards were announced it was a different story. C.J. Ross and Duane Ford both scored 115-113 for Bradley while Judge Jerry Roth scored 115-113 for Pacquiao.
The crowd booed loudly when the decision was announced. Pacquiao’s sons Manny Jr. and Michael watching their father for the first time in Las Vegas looked stunned, the reaction was the same for his wife Jinkee. It was Pacquiao’s first defeat since he lost to Erik Morales in a 12-round unanimous decision in March 2005.
Compubox statistics showed that Pacquiao landed with a higher percentage of punches: Pacquiao with 253 of 751 punches thrown, while Bradley got 159 of 839 punches thrown. Punch stats also showed that Pacquiao landed 190 of 493 power punches compared to Bradley‘s 108 of 390. We all know that numbers never lie.
Pacquiao, who fell to 54-4-2 with 38 knockouts, said he respects the judges.
“I accept what the result is,” Pacquiao said in the ringside. “I respect the judges, I cannot blame them. It is a part of the game. I give thanks to the Lord. I do my best but my best wasn’t good enough.”
“He never hurt me with his punches, most of them landed on my arms,” Pacquiao said.
The rest of the world was shocked with the decision and so was Pacquiao. When asked if he thought he had won the fight, Pacquiao said “YES,” and the crowd cheered.
Bradley, who remains unbeaten with a perfect record 29-0 with 12 knockouts, said he felt he deserved the win.
“He’s a strong puncher, he rocked me a couple of times in the fight, but I held my ground and fought to the end,” Bradley said. This is boxing. “Every round was pretty close.”
“Pacquiao won some of the early rounds. I controlled the later rounds with my jab. I need to go home and review the tape,” he added.
Promoter Bob Arum said the decision was unbelievable and lambasted the judges during the post-fight news conference.
“It is unfathomable,” said Arum. “These people don’t know how to score. The truth is they’re too damn old to judge any more. What were they looking at? This was not a close fight. It’s not good for the sport of boxing.”
“I want to congratulate Tim Bradley, he’s going to make a lot of money,” Arum said. “But I want to say I have never been ashamed as much to be associated with the sport of boxing as I am tonight.”
Arum also said the decision was more of a shocker than Pacquiao’s controversial win over Juan Manuel Marquez in November.
“It was close, everybody said it was close,” Arum said said about the Pacquiao vs Marquez bout. “This wasn’t really a close fight.”