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Sunday, November 1, 2009

Fight's off if Cotto weighs over 147 lb

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MANILA, Philippines - There’s just one thing that can keep the Manny Pacquiao-Miguel Cotto fight from happening, and that’s if the champion from Puerto Rico weighs in at over 147 lb.

“That’s the highest we could go (147 pounds),” Pacquiao’s chief trainer, Freddie Roach, was quoted as saying in an Internet report that came out yesterday.

Pacquiao and Cotto are fighting at a catchweight of 145 lb even if the 27-year-old Puerto Rican has agreed to stake his WBO welterweight (147 lb) crown.

At the start of the negotiations, Team Pacquiao tried to drag Cotto down to as low as 143 lb, but the latter said he can’t go lower than 145, and the fight was sealed.

“ I would call the fight off if he comes in weighing more than that,” Roach also said, meaning Cotto will have to make sure or even die trying to make the catchweight.

Or face the severe consequences, like losing all his purse, or even facing a legal battle.

Based on reports, Cotto will be fined $1 million for every pound in excess of 145. He can weigh in at 147, pay Pacquiao $2 million and go on and fight the Filipino pound-for-pound champion.

But if Cotto weighs just a fraction over 147, Roach said he’s pulling the plug on what could be or what should be the biggest fight of the year.

In the fight contract that either fighter who exceeds 145 lb will have to pay a fine, but it’s only today that the details had come out.

“We’re just protecting Manny,” Mike Koncz, Pacquiao’s adviser, had said.

Pacquiao is three days into training at the Wild Card Gym in Hollywood after spending more than 30 days training in three different gyms in the Philippines.

Before he boarded the plane to Los Angeles last Saturday, Pacquiao walked around 150 lb, and was happy to report in his regular column that he still gets to eat as much as he wants.

Cotto, on the other hand, must be bleeding to get down in weight. In New York, during the press tour last September, Cotto said he was at 160, and Pacquiao’s conditioning coach, Alex Ariza, liked what he heard.

“It means he has a lot more work to do than us in losing weight,” said Ariza.

Source: http://www.philstar.com/Article.aspx?articleId=518774&publicationSubCategoryId=69

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