Relive All the Action of Pacquiao-Bradley Fight Week

By Eric Raskin

Fight week is a steady build, with interviews, press conferences, and analysis on top of analysis leading toward the moment when the fighters touch gloves on Saturday. But something happens on Friday night where the steady build ends and the spike in excitement takes everything to the next level. Nowadays, the signifier that fight week is winding down and fight day is all but here is the airing of the final episode of 24/7. That’s the moment when it becomes real. The fighters are in place. The weigh-in is complete. The fight is officially on. Now we’re all just watching the clock, wishing the hands would turn a bit faster.

How will you pass the time in the final hours before Pacquiao-Bradley? How will you occupy your mind to take the edge off the anticipation? You can relive not just that final episode of 24/7, but the first, second, and third, as well. And you can celebrate everything that happened during fight week.

You can watch the fighters’ arrivals and hear what they had to say when they got to Vegas. You can look back at each man’s previous fight. You can focus on Pacquiao and what’s changed for him lately, or on getting to know Bradley. Or you can strike a balance and explore what’s at stake for each warrior, both the legendary Pacquiao and the undefeated Bradley.

If it’s strategic insight you crave, there’s no shortage of that. You can enjoy a visual breakdown. You can hear what legendary trainer and neutral observer Emanuel Steward has to say, or what legendary trainer and not-at-all neutral observer Freddie Roach has to say. You can go inside the mind of one of one of Pacquiao’s most famous knockout victims, Ricky Hatton. You can check out the CompuBox stats, or go one step farther and see what Inside HBO Boxing bloggers Eric Raskin and Kieran Mulvaney had to say about those stats. And if you think this one’s going to go the distance, you can step up your knowledge of how to score a fight right with Harold Lederman’s help.

And if it’s predictions you want, check out who the media tabbed to win when they gathered at the final press conference. Or read what the fans are saying, from those picking Pacquiao to those predicting the upset.

The clock keeps ticking, slowly but surely. Before you know it, the undercard will be underway. And then, finally Pacquiao and Bradley will step into the ring. Fight week will be over. It will be fight time.

24/7: Pacquiao/Bradley - Final Episode Tonight at 8PM ET

The Most Revealing Moments From 24/7

By Eric Raskin

This was not the first dance with the 24/7 cameras for either Manny Pacquiao or Juan Manuel Marquez. But no matter how well fans think they know these great fighters, there’s always something new to learn. Here are our selections for the most revealing moments from each episode of 24/7: Pacquiao-Marquez:


Episode 4: Some Bonds Are Unbreakable
Sometimes the word “family” refers to blood relatives, sometimes not. Two parallel moments from this episode showed the connections between these fighters and their loved ones: first, Marquez’s youngest son saying, as his dad prepared to leave for Las Vegas, “Everything will be okay.” Then, trainer Freddie Roach saying of his fighter, “I would die for Manny Pacquiao.” There is a softer side to the fight game, and it was revealed in these personal, powerful moments.


Episode 3: A Meteoric Rise Is Shared
Roach says he would die for Pacquiao. Well, the rest of Pac-Man’s friends and assistants will at least ink themselves up for him. We saw assistant trainer Buboy Fernandez getting his first tattoo, a flaming meteor on the inside of his left arm to match that of his boss and several other members of the camp. Now let’s see if Buboy takes the next step and gets Manny’s wife and kids’ names on his left shoulder.

Episode 2: No Diet Plan Lasts Forever
In arguably the most talked-about scene in 24/7 history, while preparing for his fight with Floyd Mayweather, Marquez revealed the unusual training habit of drinking his own urine. Entering the Pacquiao fight, the boxing world was dying to know: Is Marquez still digesting everything twice? In the most memorable voiceover 24/7 has ever given us, our answer was revealed: “He no longer drinks his own urine.” It’s a surreally spectacular line, made even better by the soothing sounds of Liev Schreiber’s voice.

Episode 1: Camraderie Is Thicker Than Blood
Pacquiao’s gym-mate Jorge Linares didn’t just lose to Antonio DeMarco in October. He suffered one of the bloodiest defeats we’ve ever seen. It was tough to watch—especially if you care about Linares personally, as Pacquiao does. But Pacquiao revealed the kind of man he is by going to Jorge’s dressing room afterward, consoling him, and not hesitating to offer a hug, even if his nice white shirt would certainly have to go in the trash afterwards.

Manny Pacquiao Workout

 

Manny Pacquiao/Freddie Roach Interview

 

Antonio Margarito Open Workout

 

Things We've Learned From 24/7 So Far

Photo: Chris Farina/Top Rank

by Kieran Mulvaney

Freddie Roach is deeply concerned about Manny Pacquiao's training camp. Except when he isn't.

The narrative for much of the first two episodes was of the chaos surrounding Pacquiao's camp, the fighter's distractions, the fact that being a Congressman left him with an owee on his heel. By episode 3, everything was sweetness and light, Manny was in great shape and sparring partners were being beaten up again. Nonetheless, expect questions about Pacquiao's conditioning and training to be asked loudly and frequently during fight week.

Manny is in charge

Pacquiao refers to Roach as “my Master” and with his happy demeanor and sing-song voice (to say nothing of his singing voice) comes across at times – OK, most of the time - as a little kid. Witness the way he seemed in episode 2 to not want to fess up to Roach and Alex Ariza that he was headed to Las Vegas for a day. But he is an experienced fighter, he knows what he is doing, and it is he, not Roach, who is in ultimate control. If he weren't, of course, then Roach would probably never let him spar for even a single day in Baguio. But he clearly demonstrated his independence in episode 3, when he rejected elements of Ariza's conditioning program because he didn't like the results. Pacquiao has made a decision to emphasize speed over power, and whether they like it or not, Roach and Ariza are having to go along with it.

Pacquiao had better be in shape

Antonio Margarito is ridiculously shredded. He looks to be in tremendous physical condition, and appears to be focused and to be training with a resolute focus and determination. And why wouldn't he be? This is it for him, a shot at redemption, an opportunity to prove that he belongs at the top table and that he can get there fair and square. He can show that the wipeout loss to Shane Mosley was an aberration, a consequence of lack of focus and poor training and not a sign of decline or lack of confidence once the knuckle pads in his wraps had been discovered.

Margarito doesn't care what you think about him

From Day One, Margarito has been utterly unapologetic about the hand wraps scandal. He said he didn't know a thing about what trainer Javier Capetillo had inserted into his wraps, and as a result he never felt the need to say sorry to boxing fans or even Shane Mosley for the fact that, in one fight at least, he was all set to enter the ring with an illegal weapon in his gloves. By episode 3, his demeanor suggested that he feels he is the one being treated unfairly. He's even prepared to joke about the incident, allowing others to place actual blocks of plaster on his hands while trainer Robert Garcia wraps them. You might not like that, I might not like that, but he doesn't care, and neither do his fans, who are clearly prepared to forgive and forget.

Stretch Hummers are never cool

I mean, seriously. Did you see that thing?

24/7 could probably do a good job of hyping Bambi vs Godzilla

There has been a lot of speculation and assumption on the Interwebs that much of the drama and controversy surrounding Pacquiao's supposed lack of conditioning is all a figment of 24/7's imagination, a hype job to sell a one-sided fight. It isn't. Each episode actually does an extraordinarily good job of reinforcing the word coming out each week from insiders in, and observers of, both camps. Big fights generate plenty of discussion among journalists during the days and weeks preceding them; if those discussions were moderated by Liev Schrieber with an orchestral score in the background, I'd probably never leave the press room. Of course, as long as there's free food available, I don't leave the press room anyway, but that's another story.

Ask A Fighter - Antonio Margarito

You asked, they answered. Stay tuned to Inside Fight Week for your chance to ask both Antonio Margarito and Manny Pacquaio, as well as Freddie Roach and others, your fight week questions.