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Sunday, July 26, 2009

Cotto crown at stake in tiff vs Pacquiao

THE WORLD Boxing Organization welterweight belt will be on the line when Manny Pacquiao tangles with titlist Miguel Angel Cotto on November 14 in Las Vegas.

WBO president Francisco “Paco” Valcarcel made this assurance to Michael Marley of Examiner.com Friday afternoon to assuage fears of Pacquiao fans that Cotto’s crown won’t be staked because the fight, slated at the MGM Grand, is set at a catch weight of 145 pounds and not at the regular limit of 147 pounds.

Valcarcel said he appreciated Pacquiao’s quest for a seventh weight division world title, adding that it would “be ridiculous not to dangle the WBO title” considering that a highly respected champion (Cotto) is fighting the No. 1 contender (Pacquiao).

Officially, Pacquiao has reigned as World Boxing Council super featherweight, flyweight and lightweight champion and International Boxing Federation super bantamweight titlist.

Pacquiao, the pound-for-pound king, currently holds the International Boxing Organization light welterweight crown, snatching it from British icon Ricky Hatton, whom he demolished in two rounds on May 2.

In addition, Pacquiao, who’ll be fighting at over 140 lbs for only the second time in his sterling career, has been recognized as the Ring Magazine’s featherweight, super featherweight and light welterweight champion.

In his initial foray as a welterweight, Pacquiao sent future Hall of Famer Oscar De La Hoya with an eight-round stoppage last December also at the MGM Grand.

This early, bettors have installed Pacquiao a -215 favorite and Cotto, who’s going below 147 pounds for the first time in nearly three years, a +175 underdog.

This means that a $215 bet on Pacquiao would just net $100 while a $100 wager on Cotto would generate $175.

Both Pacquiao and Cotto, who hails from Puerto Rico, are being promoted by Top Rank’s Bob Arum, assuring the 77-year-old lawyer of a windfall in gate receipts and pay per view buys of the 12-round bout dubbed “Fire Power.”

Source: inquirer.net

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