MANILA – Boxing promoter Bob Arum said the decision to delay the rematch between Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley turned out to be a wise one.
The Top Rank Promotions chief said that if they had arranged an immediate rematch following Pacquiao’s controversial loss to Bradley in 2012, they would have had to spend a lot of time explaining the result to media.
"Because of the controversy in the first fight, if we did an immediate rematch, most of the time would have been spent by the media asking if the first fight was fixed to get a second fight," Arum said during Thursday’s conference call with boxing scribes.
Pacquiao lost his WBO welterweight crown to Bradley via a split decision despite apparently outpunching the injured American during their initial face-off.
The controversial verdict drew negative reactions from boxing fans and pundits who believe that the Filipino won the 12-round skirmish.
But instead of fighting Bradley in an immediate rematch, Pacquiao fought and lost to Juan Manuel Marquez. He later bounced back by putting on a boxing clinic against Brandon Rios late in 2013.
Bradley, on the other hand, defeated Russian toughie Ruslan Provodnikov. He also outpointed Marquez to defend the WBO belt.
Pacquiao and Bradley later agreed to fight again on April 12 in Las Vegas.
"You don't hear that now,” Arum said of the controversy. “Both of these guys did their thing, fighting other opponents. There's no adverse commentary as to any manipulation in the first fight."