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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Cotto vs. Pacquiao – Teddy’s Take, the Wrong One

By Will Cruz: In a recent interview, the well known, well respected Teddy Atlas gave his thoughts on the outcome of the upcoming Mega Fight between Miguel Cotto and Manny Pacquiao. As much respect as I have for Teddy, never have I disagreed with him more than with his analysis of this fight. “I think that the ghost of Margarito is still tap dancing in his brain.

The Margarito memory combined with the Pacquiao tenacity, I think that Pacquiao gets rid of Cotto inside of five maybe three rounds. This will not become the kind of epic battle that it had the potential to be”. This was Teddy’s foundation for what he believes will be easy work inside of 5 maybe 3 rounds for Manny Pacquiao. Really Teddy?
As much boxing knowledge as Teddy brings, he provides no other real reason other than he believe Cotto is “damaged goods”. I don’t know what Teddy saw in Cotto’s fight against Joshua Clottey, but what I saw must have been different. I saw a fighter who chased away the “Margarito Ghosts” that night. I saw Cotto dig deep and not allow the beating he took a year ago take him deep into self doubt or kill his determination.

Even Teddy acknowledges that Cotto has tremendous heart, and with Cotto that has always been his strongest asset. If that still remains, he will always be dangerous. Let me make something clear, I’m in no way as knowledgeable in the fight game as Teddy is, but my problem is that his comments have less to do with boxing but more about a man’s mental toughness and determination. In that area I have knowledge.

A year ago when Margarito abused Cotto’s face, he did something to Cotto’s spirit. I read the news that comes out directly from Puerto Rico on a daily basis, and I usually get a very different perspective from the what goes on in his country and his home town. Cotto did a lot of soul searching, adding a few tattoos along the way. All of this was very symbolic for Cotto, and when the news that Margarito was caught with illegal hand wraps prior to the Mosley fight, I believe Cotto regained his confidence back.

He understood that maybe things would have played out differently that night, and although he will never say this, I believe that he believes that Margarito cheated that night. And has acknowledge that no one from his corner went into the Margarito locker room to observe the hand wrapping.

Against Joshua Clottey, not only did Cotto show guts, and heart to finish out that fight and ultimately win the decision, he showed that that his skills as a solid boxer were all still there. In round 1 Cotto knocked Clottey on his butt with a straight left JAB! Granted, Clottey was not seriously hurt, but certainly stopped him in his track. Much credit has to be given to Clottey who has great defense, a rock solid chin, and very good boxing skills.

But for 9 rounds, Cotto found a way to dig deep, win rounds behind a jab and flurries and outsmarted Clottey. With one eye through 9 rounds, Cotto got the best of Clottey and I believe he had Clottey doubting himself. A shot fighter that is “damaged goods” would not have been able to do this.

The question I have for Teddy is, if Cotto was able to fight for 9 rounds with blood in his eye, with a guy as dangerous as Clottey, and still win the decision. A guy who was stronger than Cotto, bigger, and had a superb defense, what do you think that does for his confidence? In my opinion, there is no way that after that fight Cotto did not feel as confident as he ever with his ability to adjust and win under difficult conditions during the fight.

No way will Cotto come out “gun shy” as shot fighters do, no way will he not dig deep if he is in trouble against Pacquaio and remain as dangerous as his opponent, and no way will he fold when presented with the kind of speed and power Manny brings.

When the bell rings, Cotto will not only come out confident, rejuvenated, and dangerous, he will bring the fight to Pacquiao and challenge himself to see who the better man is. Teddy makes one good point in his interview, that Miguel Cotto still has a lot of heart. That is what he is, that is all he knows. A Miguel Cotto with lots to prove, is as dangerous a Miguel Cotto as I have ever seen. Watch out Teddy, this one might make you eat your own words.

Source: boxingnews24.com

1 comment:

  1. I have always been pissed off with what that Teddy Atlas has to say... I do not believe that he is knowledgeable about boxing or anything or anything. Far as i know, Teddy has not even put on gloves to his bread-like fists. No matter how many fights he has work on with as an "announcer", that do not warrant at all that he knows what fighting is, and how fighting should be because only a fighter knows that! The only reason i can see why he is saying that BS things is that, if incase (GOD granted) pacquiao wins over cotto, it'll always be easy for him to discredit that! worst, if pacquio lost to cotto, then it'll easy for Teddy to burry pacquiao's legacy six feet under!.. For some reason, i do not know why Teddy DOES NOT LIKE pacquiao at all! Maybe because pacquiao is a filipino??? Teddy alwasy brags about his fighter, Mayweather Jr. who has always been hiding from Cotto. during my college days (5 years ago), I am a big fan of Mayweather Jr. and Roy Jones, Jr. To me, they're just naturally gifted boxers / punchers. But as i mature in life, i started to realize that the people who are more deserving of praises are those who are less gifted but have worked their way up on top, i think that well define the pacman. Much as i am excited about the Nov. 14 boxing event, I am a little concern about how pacquiao will cope cotto's power. If there is someone who has the potential to beat MP, that is COTTO. He is naturally bigger, stronger, and is a better boxer.
    To me, teddy is CRAP!!! No goods! Not at all!