DETROIT ---Throughout most of Thursday's press conference at the Motor City Casino promoting Saturday night's HBO televised junior welterweight (140 pounds) match up against southpaw WBC champion Devon Alexander, WBO king Tim Bradley scarcely looked up, his eyes concealed beneath the lid of a purple, Los Angeles Lakers' baseball cap.
The demeanor of Bradley (26-0, 11 knockouts) was in sharp contrast to that of the two, previous press events in New York and Detroit, where promoting the 27-year-old Palm Springs, Calif., resident had engaged in contentious, face-to-face shouting matches against the 23-year-old Alexander (21-0, 13 KOs), with whom he nearly came to blows.
But during the most recent occasion, Bradley, having grown weary of pre-fight shenanigans that included long speeches by his promoter, Gary Shaw, and Alexander's, Don King, brought along some reading material to keep himself occupied in the form of Pacman: Behind The Scenes.
"I've been to Don King press conference before, and it seems like he takes hours. So I told myself that I'm going to bring a book this time. I might fall asleep on stage, and I needed something to distract me a little bit," said Bradley.
"I told Don in the elevator that I brought a book because I knew that he was going to be all day," said Bradley. "So, I mean, that's the reason why I brought a book. I'm reading on Pac Man, you know, his life history. He's another guy that I really admire and I really like him as a person."
Written by Gary Andrew Poole, the book chronicles the life of eight-division champion, Manny Pacquiao, holder of the WBO welterweight (147 pounds) and WBC junior middleweight (154 pounds) belts.
"I'm learning about him. I've got half of the reading done already. I'm learning about Manny. I know why Manny fights the way that he fights. I know more about where he came from and his background growing up in the Philippines," said Bradley. "Manny Pacquiao grew up poor and in poverty and fighting on the streets. He needed to make some money to earn some money so that he could eat."
Bradley displayed similar drive, he said, in April of 2009, when he twice rose from knockdowns to win his current crown by unanimous decision over Kendall Holt (25-4, 13 KOs).
"Like Manny Pacquiao, I came a long way, because when I won the world title, I was hungry. I didn't have a lot of money and I was struggling day in and day out," said Bradley. "I came from a tough neighborhood. There are a little bit of parallels. But, not like that. Not like that. He came from nothing."
As a boy born into poverty, Pacquiao (52-3-2, 38 KOs) left a family that could no longer afford to feed him, spent homeless nights sleeping outside and days scrounging for food.
But years later, Pacquiao is a cross over star and a congressman in his native Philippines who is often mobbed by countless fans much like a rock star whenever he is in public.
Pacquiao has a May 7, Showtime pay per view televised defense of his WBO belt against three-division, five-time champion, Shane Mosley (46-6-1, 39 KOs) that will be promoted by Top Rank Promotions.
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