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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Miguel Cotto vs. Manny Pacquiao Preview

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By Trent Pusey November 11, 2009

After months of waiting, Manny Pacquiao and Miguel Cotto will finally meet in the ring this Saturday at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. It should be an exciting fight and the action begins at 9pm ET on HBO pay-per-view. The undercard features Julio Cesar Chavez Jr as well as Daniel Santos vs Yuri Foreman.

Miguel Cotto vs. Manny Pacquiao (WBO Welterweight Title)
Money Line: Cotto +190; Pacquiao -250

Miguel Cotto, 34-1 (27 KOs), was once the most feared welterweight in the world. After a thrilling loss to Antonio Margarito, in which Margarito may or may not have had illegal hand wraps, Cotto was no longer invincible. After a less than impressive win over Joshua Clottey, Miguel Cotto is looking to regain some of the luster that Margarito wiped away. Cotto is an exceptional boxer with amazing heart and toughness. Pacquiao represents his biggest fight, but the Puerto Rican is no stranger to the big stage. He headlined Madison Square Garden against Zab Judah and again with Shane Mosley. This will be his second time on pay-per-view from the MGM Grand. His first was with Margarito. The X-factor with Cotto will be how he looks during the weigh-in. The 145 pound catchweight helps Pacquiao. A drained and fatigued Cotto would help even more.

Manny Pacquiao, 49-3-2 (37 KOs), has been making history with every fight and this one is no different. He is attempting to become the first boxer to win a world title in seven different weight classes. As meaningless as boxing titles have become, it is still a mighty impressive feat. Pacquiao’s run has been amazing but his aura of invincibility really started to form after he made Oscar De La Hoya quit on his stool last year. Pacquiao followed with a quick dismantling of Ricky Hatton in May of this year, only adding to the aura. Manny appears unstoppable. His lightning fast hands and desire to engage have not only lead him to a slew of wins, but have garnered him millions of fans. There is bound to be a ceiling on Manny’s ascent up the weight classes. We will see if Miguel Cotto is in fact that ceiling this Saturday.

Fight Predictions

Trent: Both of these men are dangerous fighters, but the current wave of momentum greatly favors Manny Pacquiao. Freddie Roach has done an excellent job of scouting Pacquiao’s opponents, and his confidence in Pacquiao alone is enough for me to side with Pacman. If Cotto comes out of the weigh-in looking strong then I might want to change my opinion. Miguel Cotto is the biggest puncher that Manny Pacquiao has ever been in the ring with. He can most certainly put an early end to Pacquiao’s evening. But all the other intangibles are in Manny’s favor. Cotto also has a propensity to cut easily; never a good thing when you are in the ring with Manny Pacquiao. As long as Manny is careful in his exchanges, I see a 116-112 win for Pacman.

Paul Magno: The pressure is all on Cotto in this one. A loss for Manny means a brave effort against a bigger warrior; A loss for Cotto means a loss to a naturally smaller fighter and the end of the line in his quest for mega-fights and the accompanying mega-paydays. Stylistically, Pacquiao represents the type of fighter that has given Cotto problems in the past: a quick-fisted southpaw who throws from unorthodox angles. A much bigger Margarito never wobbled Cotto as much as “Chop Chop” Corley or, even, Zab Judah in the past. Cotto will have to deal with his two achilles heels in this contest: mental pressure and a lightning-fast lefty. Pacquiao rides the wave of history and beats a game, but befuddled Miguel Cotto via shockingly quick stoppage in the 5th.

Corey Willinger: Miguel Cotto has been getting the raw end of this deal since the beginning, and I don’t expect things to get any better for him on fight night. He’s been forced to put his title on the line without reason, and he’s battling history as Pacquiao attempts to become the first “seven-division” champion. The fact that he is a natural welterweight was Cotto’s only real advantage coming in, and Freddie Roach has effectively taken that away by having him weigh in at 145 pounds. The speedier Pacquiao will start finding his range after a round or two and will be ahead on the cards when he forces a tenth round stoppage over a bloodied Cotto. Hopefully Miguel finds the beating, both in and out of the ring, worth every penny.

Bryan Trafford: My prediction for the Pacquiao/Cotto fight is Pacquiao by unanimous decision. I don’t think he will knock Cotto out, but I do see him outboxing him over twelve rounds. I think Pacquiao will look to give Cotto angles, and get in and get out. I don’t think Manny will engage in a slugfest, to his own better judgment. This fight will be more competitive than his last two fights, but Pacmania will continue to run wild.

Source: http://insidefights.com/2009/11/11/miguel-cotto-vs-manny-pacquiao-preview/

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