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Between the Contract and Catchweight, Cotto will be at a huge disadvantage against Pacquiao

Manny Pacquiao Miguel CottoBy Manuel Perez: If Miguel Cotto wants to make the fight with Manny Pacquiao, he’s going to have to probably settle for a deal of 30 to 35% of the purse slit with Pacquiao taking 65 to 70%. Besides that, Cotto is also going to have likely agree to a catch weight of less than 145, a weight that was brought up previously as an agreeable catch weight number. It’s unknown what weight Pacquiao and his team will agree on, but look for Cotto having to come in at either 143 or 144.

I doubt that Pacquiao’s team would be ruthless enough to force Cotto to come in at a lower weight than 143, because it would mean that Pacquiao would take a lot of criticism and heat from the media and wouldn’t get a lot of credit for beating Cotto, who normally fights at 147 in the welterweight division. Pacquiao, 30, has recently started making a name for himself with wins over Oscar De La Hoya and Ricky Hatton.

The De La Hoya win was less impressive than it might have been because De La Hoya was forced to come in at a 147 pound catch weight, which was a seven pounds lighter than what De La Hoya normally fights at. The loss of weight left De La Hoya greatly weakened and not at his best on fight night and he ended up being defeated by Pacquiao in a one-sided 8th round stoppage in December.

De La Hoya said afterwards that he felt tired and weak after the 1st round and had no energy after this round. This effectively meant that Pacquiao’s win over De La Hoya was hallow and not as real as it seemed although unknowing boxing fans with only a cursory knowledge of the sport accepted Pacquiao’s victory as being real.

However, with De La Hoya basically weakened and neutralized because of the catch weight, Pacquiao’s was a victory in name only in my view.

In his fight with Hatton it wasn’t a case of catch weight but rather Hatton just not being prepared to fight a fighter with the quickness of Pacquiao. Hatton didn’t help himself by gaining and then having to lose weight to make the fight. It seems that Hatton had gone to the well one too many times and wasn’t prepared physically to fight Pacquiao on that night and ended up being taken out in the 2nd round.

Cotto, 28, will have to hope that he’s not too weakened by whatever catch weight that Pacquiao and his team come up with. I can’t imagine that he’ll be able to operate at full power if he’s forced to come in at less than 145. Cotto looks sickly even when he’s dehydrating to get down to 147, and I can’t imagine how he’ll be able to strip down an additional three to five pounds to make the catch weight demands that Pacquiao is asking for.

A win for Pacquiao over a weight drained Cotto won’t mean anything other than that he can beat a weight drained fighter. This is the problem for fighters like Pacquiao who choose to take on fighters in the higher weight classes. For him to be competitive, he requests that his bigger opponents come in at a lighter weight.

The choice of Cotto, as most people are already aware, is a strange one given that Cotto was recently destroyed by Mexican Antonio Margarito in a 11th round stoppage in 2008. Cotto recently won a controversial 12-round split decision over Joshua Clottey in his last fight on June 13th.

For some people, they see Cotto as as having lost two out of his last three fights, which isn’t exactly the kind of earth shattering opponent that you would expect to be matched up with Pacquiao. But then again, De La Hoya had lost three out of his last six fights coming into his bout with Pacquiao and Hatton had lost one out of his last three and got extra help from the referee when he pulled Juan Lazcano off of Hatton in the 8th after Juan had Ricky badly hurt from a big left hook.

The referee stopped the action to allow Hatton to have his shoelaces tied in the middle of him being battered around the ring after being hurt.

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