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Saturday, July 25, 2009

Does Steward have silver bullet to stop Pacquiao?

Is Manny Steward the silver bullet for Miguel Angel Cotto?

Can the Goldfather from the fabled but now defunct Kronk Gym in Detroit show the Puerto Rican banger the way to dethrone Pound for Pound king Manny Pacquiao when they fight in Las Vegas Nov. 14?

I thought you’d never ask but thanks for the great question.

The quick answer is no, the long answer is no and all the answers are no.

Could Steward sharpen Cotto up, improve a Class A fighter who has only lost once in 35 pro bouts?

Could he bolster the once swaggering confidence Cotto had before he took a pounding from a possibly cheating Antonio Margarito?

The quick answer is yes, the long answer is yes and all the answers are yes.

This is not the same as Coach Freddie Roach coming in like hired gun Paladin (“Wire Paladin, San Francisco”) and revamping a 22 year old Amir Khan.

Khan, badly shaken by a one round KO loss to unheralded Breidis Prescott, needed emergency renovations. Roach went to work and Khan totally bought into his approach.

These training changes are something like hypnotism. In terms of the fighter, they can only work if the fighter believes in the new trainer and in the process.

Evidently, Khan believes in Roach with a capital “B.”

When Roach says jump, protégé Khan says, “How high?” and then leaps over tall buildings in a single bound.

But Cotto is about as seasoned a professional as there is.

He will be 29 on Oct. 29 and he is not the spring chicken that Khan is.

I can’t see how Steward or Buddy McGirt or any other “name trainer” who is brought into the
Cotto camp can make major changes in Cotto’s style.

Where a Steward or a McGirt could be more valuable to Cotto is on fight night, working the corner.

The corner psychology of a Steward, a Teddy Atlas or a McGirt might lit a needed fire or put one out during the Pacquiao bout for Cotto.

I don’t know Cotto that well but he seems like a go with the flow type of guy.

Hiring Steward, who might prefer to stick to the HBO microphone at this point in his career, could help and might not hurt.

But’s Steward is no magician. Hiring him is no quick elixir.

Cotto is going to have beat Pacquiao with his basic equipment that brought him to 34-1 with a 77 percent KO ratio,

Cotto obviously has no great faith in his training team as it exists. He's been quoted as saying he was willing to discuss working with Steward.

So it looks as though the door to the Cotto camp is wide open.

Like any veteran trainer, Steward has had his failures. He didn't stick with Jermain Taylor and, for whatever reason, they never really meshed or clicked.

You can argue that Steward is a better trainer than Taylor is a fighter and you would be right. But chemistry can sometimes be the reason why a trainer can or can't lift a boxer's performance level.

But, in terms of winning or losing against Megamanny, it’s Cotto's faith in himself which is more relevant.

Stopping the rising Pacman is one trick Cotto must perform on his own once that first bell rings in mid-November.

Source: http://www.examiner.com/x-5699-NY-Boxing-Examiner~y2009m7d25-Miguel-Cotto-may-want-silver-bullet-from-Goldfather-Steward

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