The Rebuilding of Miguel Cotto
By Manuel Perez: For most people who witnessed former World Boxing Association welterweight champion Miguel Cotto’s (32-1, 26 KOs) 11th round stoppage defeat to Antonio Margarito on July 26th in Las Vegas, Nevada, they saw Cotto take a terrible beating ending with him twice taking a knee in the 11th round in order to prevent himself from being beaten even worse than he was. Though some boxing fans seem to suggest that it wasn’t that bad of a beating, that Cotto was just bathed in blood from two cuts around his eyes including a bloody nose, but I beg to differ; Cotto was broken by Margarito mentally as well as physically, the type of way that tends to stick with a fighter for the remainder of his days.
Many a fighter has never been the same after taking a savage beating like the one that Cotto took. But, then again, there are fighters that rebound quickly after a fight like this, showing almost no affects from the fight. One would hope that Cotto is of the latter type, because if he still is feeling the effects of his fight with Margarito, then it will be quickly brought to forefront as soon as he takes on another live body. It would be wise for Cotto to take thing slowly for awhile to check out what he has left of his motor skills after all the head shots he took, and also to enable him to rebuild his shattered self confidence.
Boxing fans, naturally, want Cotto to rush right back into another entertaining fight with Margarito, and thereby enabling Cotto to possibly gain revenge. That, however, is unlikely to happen regardless of what Cotto himself wants. His promoter will never let him get back into the ring with Margarito so quickly, even though it would mean a huge payday for both Cotto and Margarito, because Cotto would be in great danger of losing a second time by an equally stoppage loss.
Its fights like these that sometimes do a lot of damage to a fighter, messing them up, and shortening their boxing career. It’s done from time to time, but thankfully not nearly as often as it used to be in the past when fighters like Joe Frazier went straight from a loss to Muhammed Ali into a fight with George Foreman eight months later without any other fights in between. What Cotto needs is some easy welterweight opponents, like Mike Jones, Steve Forbes, or Roberto Garcia.
In other words, fighters with a name but not nearly on the same talent level as Cotto. This would enable him to get a good win over a decent fighter while at the same time getting his confidence back by fighting a decent opponent. As far as taking on another welterweight champion like, say, Andre Berto, Paul Williams or Joshua Clottey, I wouldn’t advise for him to do that.
Although I think he’d beat both Berto and Clottey, they’d make it tough on him by landing a lot of hard head shots – which is exactly what he doesn’t need right now. As for Paul Williams, a virtual clone of Margarito, I think he’d do the same to Cotto that Margarito did, only in quicker time.