Sports

Timothy Bradley starting to pick up Fight of the Year honors

December 23rd, 2013 | by Leighton Ginn | Comments
Ruslan Provodnikov takes a body shot from Timothy Bradley during their WBO welterweight championship fight in Carson on March 16. (Photo by Omar Ornelas, The Desert Sun)

Ruslan Provodnikov takes a body shot from Timothy Bradley during their WBO welterweight championship fight in Carson on March 16. (Photo by Omar Ornelas, The Desert Sun)

It’s early but it looks like Timothy Bradley has secured Fight of the Year honors for his victory over Ruslan Provodnikov. Sports Illustrated’s Chris Mannix, The El Paso Times’ Matthew Aguilar and HBO’s Jim Lampley have all called it the best fight of 2013. You can judge for yourself as HBO will replay Bradley-Provodnikov on Christmas Eve. Something you can watch while waiting for Santa.

Lampley said, on his television show The Fight Game on HBO,  he had the second fight between Brandon Rios and Mike Alvarado as the early favorite in March, which was about two weeks after Bradley-Provodnikov. But when Bradley beat Juan Manuel Marquez in October and Provodnikov brutalized Mike Alvarado to win a light welterweight title, that greatly changed the perspective on Bradley’s victory over Provodnikov. During the segment, Lampley spoke with Max Kellerman, who considered Bradley his Fighter of the Year. Lampley went with Gennady Golovkin. For the record, Mannix went with Adonis Stevenson, and Aguilar went with Guilllermo Rigondeaux.

(PHOTOS: Timothy Bradley Jr. Defends WBO Title | Timothy Bradley Jr. Press Conferece | Timothy Bradley Jr. Media Workout in LA)

Mannix talked about how the fight defied what everyone expected when Bradley elected to turn the fight into a slugfest, which played into Provodnikov’s hands. Mannix wrote, “They stood toe-to-toe, in the middle of the ring, launching and landing  concussive, face-shredding blows.”

Aguilar also points out how Bradley abandoned boxing his opponent and went straight in to exchange heavy blows with a heavy hitter. Aguilar also named the 12th round, when Provodnikov scored a knockdown in the closing seconds when Bradley took a knee, as the round of the year.

Aguilar wrote, “Afterwards, both fighters were grotesquely bruised, and Bradley admitted to concussion symptoms for several weeks. It was that kind of fight.”

The Atlantic listed the Bradley-Provodnikov bout in a look at the year-end highlights.

Gary Andrew Poole wrote, “When you sit ringside at a boxing match, it’s a different sport from what you see on television. The gloves are striking flesh, and a human being’s brain is being sloshed around in its skull, and the sensory overload of all these forces at work bring about more drama than any sport in the world. And it is at these moments that you can’t believe the courage within the brutality.”

(On Facebook: In your opinion, what was the best fight of 2013?)

For those of you looking for those articles:

- Sports Illustrated: Bradley, Roach among SI’s award winners for 2013 performances

- El Paso Times: Matthew Aguilar: 2013 End-of-Year awards: 12 months of pugilism

- The Atlantic: The Year in Sports: 2013′s Most Epic Wins and Heartbreaking Losses

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