After a great first episode, which was more like an introduction or a “this is how we got to here” type of episode, the second didn’t keep the momentum going in my opinion.
Here are my thoughts about 24/7 Pacquiao/Bradley 2 episode 2:
To me, this is about two things.
1. Does Manny Pacquiao still have it?
2. The redemption of Timothy Bradley
And for the most part, the episodes carry those themes. But I’m not sure I want to see Freddie Roach hanging out with Mickey Rourke at a salon while Roach gets teased. I want to see these guys talk more about how much this fight means to them.
And while I don’t think it was 24/7’s usual excellent episode, there were quality moments in there. I believe that Roach finds it hard biting his tongue with all the questions surrounding Pacquiao since his lost to Juan Manuel Marquez. This isn’t only about whether Pacquaio has it, but as a trainer, how can he game plan well enough to help his fighter overcome? He mentioned thinking it was disrespectful when Bradley made comments about Manny not having it anymore. I think he also may feel that people wonder if he is as good as his reputation. Is a trainer only as good as his best fighter?
On the other hand, Joel Diaz seems to be the more urgent of the trainers. He feels that Bradley has to clearly beat Pacquaio or else they won’t get the decision. Actually, I think that too. I think Pacquiao may get the benefit of the doubt on any close decision this time around. Bradley seems ticked off for redemption. He has to redeem something he says that he already did.
There are a few wrinkles that make good narratives after the fact. Timothy Bradley’s wife is now his manager and she negotiated not only this fight, but a two-year contract with Bob Arum. Shane Mosley just raised his eyebrows.
Justin Fortune, who was Manny’s strength and conditioning coach before Alex Ariza took over and Fortune says he and Roach stopped working together over money. They’ve patched things up and he’s apologized. He wants to change Pacquiao’s regimen back to old school boxing workouts mixed with new stuff that works. The idea seemed to be that he’ll be able to force Pacquiao to take it to the next level, even if he doesn’t want to, rather than catering to him.
Pacquiao wants to please the fans. Roach wants a knockout. But Timothy Bradley seems to be in pain, even after the win. He seems hungrier than Pacquiao. But is he better?
All in all, there were good things in the episode and I enjoyed it. I just hope there’s more of what I liked and less of what I didn’t in the go-home show on Friday.