MANILA, Philippines – Strength and conditioning trainer Alex Ariza will be working in the corner of Filipino ring icon Manny Pacquiao for his June 9 title defense against Timothy Bradley, his chief trainer, Freddie Roach, announced.
“The corner will be me, Miguel Diaz, and Buboy (Fernandez) and Alex Ariza,” Roach said, as quoted by RingTV.
Roach initially wanted Ariza out of Pacquiao’s corner. In the latest episode of the HBO reality series “24/7: Pacquiao vs Bradley,” the trainer said he would leave Ariza out of the list of the four cornerman for the fight.
The tension between Roach and Ariza has been escalating, especially after Ariza’s unscheduled departure from Pacquiao’s Baguio training camp last month.
But the two seemed to have cleared the air now, just in time for Pacquiao’s world title defense against Bradley this Saturday at the MGM Grand.
“We talked to Manny last night, and we’re all going to sit down and go over everyone’s job and what they’re intended to do,” Roach said.
“No one’s going to step on anyone’s toes. No one’s going to cross over and do anyone else’s job. We had a long talk about that, and there shouldn’t be any problems,” he added.
Roach has not been on good terms with Ariza during Pacquiao’s training camp, even saying that he will ask Pacquiao to fire the other trainer.
In a recent episode of “24/7,” however, it seemed as though Pacquiao did not listen to Roach’s suggestion.
“Manny likes him and wants him on board, so that’s the way it is,” Roach said at the time.
During fight night, Roach and Ariza will have to work together, as Roach may ask the strength trainer to shout instructions for him as he had done so in Pacquiao’s previous matches.
“If I ask Alex to say something, because I don’t have a voice like he does, then yes, I’ll ask him,” Roach said.
“But everyone’s got to understand their roles and we’ll have no problem at all,” he added.