Rios discusses ‘second best opponent’ Bradley – says Vargas left it too late

The 29 year-old has strung together back-to-back victories against Diego Chaves and three-time foe Mike Alvarado to put himself in position to challenge Bradley for his WBO belt, having lost out to former title holder Manny Pacquiao in 2013.

Bradley lost to Pacquiao in similar style to Rios via a wide margin on the cards before bouncing back to defeat Jessie Vargas for a recognised title, and ‘Bam Bam’ has complete respect for ‘Desert Storm’ as the pair edge closer to their clash at the Thomas and Mack Center.

“Bradley is no Pacquiao. We all know that, but Bradley will be the second-best fighter I have ever faced,” said Rios.”

“Jessie Vargas waited too long in his fight against Bradley. Vargas let Bradley do what wanted he wanted to do except for the final seconds of the fight. I fought Alvarado earlier this year and was in the best shape of my life. I have accomplished a lot in boxing.

“Robert Garcia, my trainer, has stuck with me all the way. I want to thank Robert and Cameron Dunkin for getting me this shot against Bradley.

“This is a big fight and for me and it’s about more than the money and the title — it’s about winning — beating Bradley,” he added.