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2013 Fight of the Year: Revisiting Timothy Bradley vs. Ruslan Provodnikov

2013 Fight of the Year: Revisiting Timothy Bradley vs. Ruslan Provodnikov

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2013 Fight of the Year: Revisiting Timothy Bradley vs. Ruslan Provodnikov

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

2013 Fight of the Year: Revisiting Timothy Bradley vs. Ruslan Provodnikov

On Saturday, March 16, 2013, Timothy Bradley Jr. faced Ruslan Provodnikov, looking to defend his WBO welterweight title that he controversially won in the previous fight against Manny Pacquiao. The fight between Bradley and Provodnikov took place at the Home Depot Center in Carson, California. It was an absolute war, which led to the fight winning the 2013 fight of the year.

Timothy Bradley vs. Ruslan Provodnikov: Revisiting the 2013 Classic

Timothy Bradley vs. Ruslan Provodnikov

Bradley came into the fight against Provodnikov off the back of his hugely controversial win against Pacquiao. The Russian-born fighter was a known brawler who would bring entertainment value to this fight, but “Desert Storm” was determined to bring the excitement. 

Both fighters started aggressively from the first round, with Provodnikov catching the American – knocking him down. Despite being ruled a slip, it was a sign of what was to come. Bradley showed his toughness in round two, surviving a vicious attack from the Russian fighter. 

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Bradley gradually worked his way into the fight, and it only added to this absolute barnstormer as both sat down on their punches and traded. Round six was a classic, as both fighters exchanged massive punches throughout. Bradley fought smart at times but was too often dragged into brawling, which played right into the hands of his opponent.

The final knockdown of the fight occurred in the last round as Provodnikov caught Bradley with a peach of a left hand, which was followed by a right hand that sent him crashing to the canvas with just seconds left. The American made the count and survived the round. 

Result and Regret

Despite the back-and-forth nature of this bout, Bradley got the decision despite being knocked down. The judge’s scorecards read 114-113 x2 and 115-112, giving the unanimous decision to the Palm Springs native. The knockdown ruled a slip in round one, was ultimately the deciding factor.

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Provodnikov’s trainer, Freddie Roach, reflected on a missed opportunity after the fight: “That’s the only round (2) I want to re-do,” Roach said. “I think (Provodnikov) could have stopped him with an early knockdown in the second round. He had him hurt and went crazy. He tried to land the shot and tired himself out. He gave Timothy the time to come back. Timothy is one of the most resilient guys in the world and he proved that right there.”

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Freelance Writer and Digital Marketer, spending most of his time waiting for the Tyson Fury vs Usyk announcement. Also watches YouTube videos of Lennox Lewis fights on a daily basis.

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