In a recent FightHype interview, Tim Bradley shared his insightful perspectives on the Canelo Alvarez vs. Jamal Charlo fight. Bradley, a seasoned commentator with ESPN and Pro Box TV, gave a candid review of the bout and dissected both fighters’ performances.
“From day one, I’ve been saying that this fight was a mismatch. People kept saying Charlo was the bigger man, he’s taller, has a longer reach. But I kept wondering, does he possess the skills to really challenge Canelo?”
Bradley emphasized the importance of skill over physical attributes. He noted that while many see advantages in height or reach, it’s the skills that truly determine a fighter’s success.
Skills, Weight, and the “Mismatch”
Bradley recalled the fights Charlo had before this important bout. He didn’t see the necessary skill set in Charlo that would enable him to compete with someone of Canelo’s caliber. He explained:
“Knowing what Canelo has achieved over the years and understanding his fighting style, I knew Charlo wasn’t going to show up as expected.”
But what really stood out in Bradley’s analysis was the weight division and the significant difference it made in the outcome.
“Charlo was two divisions below Canelo. From the moment the first punch was thrown, Charlo knew. He wasn’t the same fighter we’ve seen before, and I didn’t expect him to be.”
The Selling of “Hope”
In a lighthearted moment during the interview, Bradley humorously showcased a bottle, labeling it as “hope.” He remarked:
“People were sold on hope, thinking Charlo had a fighting chance. If anyone was mad about the fight, they should direct their frustration at themselves or perhaps Canelo.”
The point Bradley makes here is clear: there’s always hype leading up to these make-or-break fights, but the reality can be starkly different.
Consistency in Canelo’s Style
Bradley lauded Canelo for his consistent style and techniques. He recognized Canelo’s tactics, which haven’t changed much over the years. From his high guard to his pull counters, Canelo’s maneuvers have been consistent. Bradley said:
“That’s the same Canelo we’ve seen for the past three years. He’s tactically brilliant and uses the same effective techniques repeatedly.”
Charlo’s Pre-Fight State
Bradley observes that Charlo seemed to have lost the fight mentally even before it started. He hints that something felt off with Charlo during the pre-fight press tour.
“Anytime you see somebody out of character, that’s the problem. There’s a problem there.“
Adding to this, Bradley highlights the challenges of inactivity. Charlo hadn’t been in the ring for 16 months, which can lead to self-doubt.
“He ain’t been in the ring in 16 months…you lose that feeling in the ring. You start doubting.“
The Pressure of Being in the Spotlight
The pressure of facing a larger-than-life opponent like Canelo, combined with the intense hype and being out of the ring for such a long time, could have played tricks on Charlo’s mind.
“You’re fighting something larger than life itself… the biggest name in the sport. There’s a lot of pressure that comes along with that.“
The Real Goal in Boxing
Bradley elucidates that in boxing, fighters start off by building confidence through multiple challenges. The ultimate goal?
“Win the World Championship. That’s going to give you more money.“
Charlo had already achieved this. The opportunity against Canelo was not just about the title, but the significant financial benefit it could bring.
Bradley brings his personal experience into the conversation, discussing his fights and the decisions he made for strategic reasons.
“So when I fought… I got with the right promoter so that way I can set my family up for life.“
The Outcome and Fan Reactions
Bradley suggests that fans and the media might be too quick to place blame. Instead, they should acknowledge both sides of the story.
“Canelo, you supposed to be legendary… supposed to put on a show for your fans.“
He also addresses the double standards in boxing, suggesting that fans hold some fighters to different standards.
“Hold Canelo accountable too because if it was Crawford, Tank, Shakur Stevenson… they’d be in the same boat.“
In summary, Bradley emphasizes the complexities of the sport and the immense pressure fighters face. While the outcome might not have been as expected, one thing is clear:
“Don’t hate the player; hate the game.“