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Sunday, August 30, 2009

Cotto vs. Pacquiao: A Fighter’s Fight

Fonseca: On Nov 14th, Miguel Cotto will be facing Manny Pacquiao at the MGM Grand, in Las Vegas, Nevada. If your a fight fan and or fighter/boxer, you should be excited as I am. Two of boxing’s exciting and great warriors are set for battle and it promises to be an all out action packed WAR.

First, we have Manny Pacquiao (49-3-2 37 by ko), who is coming off of a recent destruction of Ricky Hatton, a fighter who in my opinion wasn’t overrated at all. He was just not as good as everyone thought he was. Pacquiao has the chance to become the first boxer to win 7 belts in different weight classes, a huge accomplishment if he can get pass Miguel Cotto.

Now lets analyze the Pacman: First of all, he has very fast hands and good foot work, and over the past few fights has had good lateral head movement. However, he still has the tendency to get a little wild at times and tries to brawl which would not serve him well against a pretty good counter puncher like Cotto.

I believe that most people feel that Pacquiao’s greatest weapon for this fight is his speed and ackward movements, which often give his opponets trouble. The question on everybody’s mind is can Pacquiao really take hits from a real welterweight, even though Cotto isnt a really big welterweight?

Well, in my opinion no he was caught a few times by Oscar De La Hoya, and it didnt hurt him but it got his attention. The same for when hatton connected – which neither De La Hoya and Hatton did much of – but that doesn’t mean that Pacquiao will be beaten by Cotto. Pacquiao can still win. Manny can’t stay still or get caught or it isnt going to be an early night.

I honestly don’t see how anyone can say that Pacquiao is going to stop Cotto. I just dont see it happening at all. The only way I think Pacquiao can win is by scorecards or because of a referee stoppage due to a cut.

Manny is a very talented fighter, ferocious and has got a lot of guts. Even though I think that he is good, I don’t think he’s an all time great. By no means am I taking anything away from him; He has accomplished a lot and has given his people a lot to cheer about, but I cant help but notice that many of his opponents have been cherry picked.

Pacquiao fought both Erik Morales and Marco Antonio Barrera at the end of their boxing careers, beating both of them. But I think Pacquiao lost both of his fights against Juan Manuel Marquez. Now to more recent fights, Pacquiao fought a washed up, old, dehydrated DeLa Hoya and Hatton, who was never an elite fighter to begin with, and who has zero defense. But again not taking anything away from Pacquiao, he did what he had to and his trainer, Freddie Roach picked good fights for him.

We have Cotto (34-1, 27 KO’s) who is coming off of his slim win over Joshua Clottey in June. I felt that Clottey rightfully lost the bout because of the first round knockdown and Clottey’s lack of work in the last rounds. I hear so many people say Cotto will get dominated and he will get knocked out, and so forth and so on. But I don’t think that’s the case.

Cotto has a good shot at winning. He has at least to me proven that he still has heart and good boxing skills. Cotto did seem a little uneasy at times in the Clottey fight but to me its understandable Clottey is a big welterweight.

Cotto might be able to offset Pacquiao’s speed with his counte punching, his power and good boxing skills, like Cotto did against Shane Mosley, Carlos Quintana and Zab Judah. Many people believe that Cotto is damaged, but I personally don’t think that. Cotto can win if he finds a way to hit Manny.

I do believe if it goes to the score cards it will be hard for Cotto to win. The favorite – in this case, Pacquiao – always has a advantage, just like the Paulie Malignaggi and Juan Diaz fight, which was a shame for boxing. Cotto has a tendency to get gassed in the later rounds and do a lot of baking up. He needs to be prepared and in top shape to prevent that from happening.

Cotto isn’t slow at all but he isn’t faster than Pacquiao. Not taking anything away from Cotto but he isn’t what he was before (before his 11th round TKO loss to Antonio Margarito) but he is slowly coming back to his former self.

Whether Margarito used plaster or not, a loss is a loss no matter if it wasn’t fair. Cotto needs to get back up and move on fast if he intends to win. It’s going to be an interesting fight no matter the outcome and I’m counting down the days. Cotto/Pacquiao is going to be a very great fight, a fight of the year. I hope the fans show both Cotto and Pacquiao the respect and admiration these two great warriors deserve for what they do for the sport of boxing.

This wouldn’t be a good piece without a prediction, so here it goes: I see the fight not going past the 10th round. The only way Cotto can win is by stoppage or knockout in the later rounds, maybe sooner. I believe that Cotto right now is the hungrier fighter and that he will deal with Pacquiao’s speed. It might give him trouble in the beginning but he will adapt like he has against the other fast fighters he has fought. I don’t see Pacquiao taking Cotto’s shots but again it’s boxing and anything can happen.

So there’s my prediction. I see Cotto winning by late stoppage or knockout in later rounds. I think he’ll be too strong for Pacquiao, and a lot stronger than anyone Manny has faced as of yet. People said that about both De La Hoya and Hatton but Cotto is on a whole different level.

Source: boxingnews24.com

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