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Cotto Willing to Fight Pacquiao at 144, But Manny Could Want Him to Come Lower at 142

Manny Pacquiao Miguel CottoBy Manuel Perez: Manny Pacquiao’s promoter Bob Arum is eager for Manny to face Miguel Cotto, another fighter promoted by Arum, and would like Pacquiao to fight Cotto in the Puerto Rican’s stomping grounds at New York’s Madison Square Garden. This is a move that would guarantee a huge surge of Puerto Ricans that would flock to the fight, and according to Philstar, Arum thinks that the fight could capture as many as “80,000 Pay per view buys in Puerto Rico.

However, the catch weight is an issue in the fight. Cotto, the WBO welterweight champion, said that he could come down to 144 for the fight, but it’s likely that Pacquiao will want Cotto come even lower, possibly 142 or maybe even as low as 140.

Either of those weights would almost crippling for Cotto to make at this point, because Miguel hasn’t fought at that low a weight since his fight with Paulie Malingnaggi way back in 2006, Even then, Cotto had to struggle to make the weight and looked sickly in having to dehydrate to make the weight.

Before a bout with Cotto can even be considered, Miguel must first defeat Joshua Clottey on June 13th at Madison Square Garden. That won’t be an easy fight for Cotto, because Clottey is a tough fighter along the lines of Antonio Margarito who stopped Cotto in the 11th round in July 2008.

At this point, there’s still a question whether Cotto is the same fighter he was before that fight, as he proved nothing by taking on the soft British fighter Michael Jennings in February, a fight which Cotto won in a 5th round stoppage.

I doubt that Cotto will be functional at 144, and at 142 or 140, you might as well consider it a win for Pacquiao, because Cotto will be far too weak to compete with Pacquiao in this fight. But I guess that’s then whole point of forcing Cotto to come in at a lower eight, isn’t it?

Freddie Roach, Pacquiao’s trainer, doesn’t want Pacquiao to fight Cotto at the 147, because he probably knows well enough that Cotto would wipe the deck with Pacquiao at that weight and make easy work of him. But so what? That’s expected because Cotto is the bigger and stronger fighter and Pacquiao is the one who’s eager to move up in weight to fight better known fighters that the boxing public actually cares about.

That’s the price that Pacquiao has to pay to fight a quality fighter like Cotto, and it’s hardly fair to cripple Cotto by making him come in at a weight that he can’t fight well at anymore. If Pacquiao needs to have an advantage like this, he might as well stay at lightweight and fight Juan Manuel Marquez for the third time like he should have done a long time ago.

It seems like Roach and Pacquiao’s other advisers are really calculating with their schemes of coming up with catch weights that put Pacquiao at a full advantage in fights by having his opponents too weight drained to fight effectively. I personally don’t like this. If Pacquiao can’t beat Cotto at 147, then Pacquiao has no business fighting him. The same goes for Shane Mosley and Floyd Mayweather Jr.

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