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The Catch-Weight Debate

Manny Pacquiao Miguel CottoBy Tom Stokes: Manny Pacquiao (49-3, 37 KO’s) has come under fire a lot lately but one reason the critics are on his back again, is the fact that he is making Miguel Cotto (34-1, 27 KO’s) fight at a catch weight limit of 145 pounds for their upcoming super fight, with many boxing critics and fans alike criticising Pacquiao for not fighting at the 147 pound welterweight limit.

But what about the other super fight happening this year, I’m talking about Juan Manuel Marquez (50-4, 37 KO’s) vs. Floyd Mayweather (39-0, 25 KO’s), marquez is fighting Mayweather at a catch weight of 144 pounds, 1 pound under the catch weight for the Pacquiao/Cotto fight (and before you say 1 pound doesn’t make a difference it does!).

So why is it that the boxing world is only interested in criticising Pacquiao for wanting a catch weight below the 147 pound limit, and marquez seems to have gone unnoticed for his conquest to have his fight with Mayweather at an even lower catch weight than the Pacquiao/Cotto fight?

Cotto hasn’t fought below the proposed 145 pound catch weight since 2006 when he beat Paul Malignaggi (26-3, 5 KO’s), since then he’s competed at welterweight, so coming down those 2 extra pounds will mean more work for Cotto, since Pacquiao won’t have to worry about taking off to much weight, from that perspective I can understand why people are complaining about the catch weight for the fight and also having the WBO title on the line too.

But what about Mayweather, he hasn’t been lower than 144 since 2005 (1 pound less than Cotto), and that was when he fought Arturo Gatti (40-9, 31 KO’s) (R.I.P.), and to add to that Mayweather has been out of the ring for two years, and he’s got more weight to take off than Cotto, so how come Mayweather isn’t getting the same “sympathy” that Cotto seems to be receiving for his catch weight with Marquez.

If Marquez is victories against Mayweather will the boxing community be using the excuse that Mayweather was “weight drained” a term Pacquiao’s been hounded by since he demolished Oscar De La Hoya (39-6, 30 KO’s), (whom many had as the favourite to beat Pacquiao before the fight), or will the weight not be a factor in this fight and only a factor with Pacquiao/Cotto.

I understand that marquez has never fought at welterweight before and therefore it’s not entirely fair to have him weight in at 147, and yes Pacquiao has fought at welterweight before and knows the weight, but it feels as though Pacquiao is being criticised for every decision he’s made regarding his fight with Cotto, and Marquez is going unnoticed.

Is the reason Pacquiao is getting all the press on his catch weight because the WBO title is on the line and the next WBC diamond belt and the purse split too. Either way there is an unhealthy amount of criticism being thrown Pacquiao’s way at the moment.

But then again that’s the burden Pacquiao carries being No1, there will always be haters, you can never please them, and being No2 (Marquez) no one’s really cares what decisions you make (if the tables were turned and marquez was No1 things might be different or would they?), and if Pacquiao does beat Cotto I can guarantee that “weight drained” will be making another appearance into article’s and conversations regarding Pacquiao and Cotto, but I’m not sure whether the same will be said for Marquez if he beats Mayweather. Let’s have your opinion on the catch weight debate!

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