Pacquiao dominates Cotto
by Paoee Natanawan: Saturday November 14, 2009 marked an event in history where Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao solidified his claim as the number one pound-for-pound fighter in world and the first boxer ever to win seven titles in seven different weight divisions. The last record was held by Manny and Oscar De La Hoya with both six title in six different weight class. First of all, congratulations to Manny for a very well earned victory.
In spite of what critics and other boxing analyst and even fans all around the world says, Manny still came and proved them all wrong. Now after the fight excuses are piling up and still everyone has something to say. Some claiming that Miguel Cotto was weight drained for the fight and Manny just fought a shadow of Cotto (Some of you readers might have an idea who said that and like you I am laughing my heart out at that guy who have no word and now I can’t even classify as man.), or Cotto never got over the Margarito fight, or some might say he’s overrated, or even Pacquiao has illegal wraps.
Here’s what I have to say about it and I don’t think everyone will agree with me on some of what I have to say.
Both camp did very well on their camp. But, for me it’s really clear what the difference is between the two and I already saw weaknesses on both sides.
First on Cotto’s camp, Cotto started his training earlier than Pacquiao. Might be good or can also be bad. Bad meaning he reached his top condition earlier and you can’t actually hold it with still a week remaining before the fight. Given the fact that he is on a diet. As some of you have seen on the episodes of HBO 24/7, Cotto was really moody in the last week before the fight. That shows a lot and Pacquiao is right. The catch weight is affecting him and he is on a diet. But still Cotto was able to make the catch weight and still for me look pretty good on the weigh-in(Liam said he looks like a lollipop).
On the other hand, we have Manny’s very crazy camp. Started in Baguio, a high altitude place which I would prefer than Manila and all the distractions it brings. Went down the mountains to Manila due to typhoon bound to hit Baguio. Then distracted with all politicians and people trying to get close to Manny which pissed Freddie a lot. Then flew to LA’s Wild Card gym which for me is the best gym to train in. With the place’s effect on the boxer’s body which should be proven scientifically I guess. Then I believe Pacquiao reached his top condition just in time and he doesn’t have to worry about his weight.
Now if you look into both camps you can see the difference. Cotto has a green camp. Joe Santiago for me is just not yet ready to handle Cotto and he’s a yes-man kind of trainer which is really bad. The boxer should have someone who can discipline him and don’t spoil him or does whatever he said. The Cotto camp is literally Cotto’s camp. He calls the shot and decide for himself and they just agrees with him. On Pacquiao you have a master. Freddie is without a doubt one of the best trainer. Doesn’t give in to what Manny wants. Freddie wants to pack up and leave and that’s what happened. They left Manila earlier than expected. Manny apologizes to Freddie for what happened in Manila and they’re back on track. And no matter what they say, Freddie really got into everyone’s head in Cotto’s camp.
For sparring partners, Cotto has Kenny Abril(9-3-1) and Fred Turkes(southpaw 7-1-1) while Pacquiao has Jose Luis Castillo (60-9-1) and Shawn Porter (10-0) and reserves Escobar and Antillon. A clear edge on Manny in this aspect. You can argue with me about it.
The first round I give to Cotto. He’s really showing his game. He even tagged Pacquiao with jabs and body shots. Round two Cotto is still showing some good signs. Though Pacquiao started to connect and get his rhythm. I have it even. Then the start of Cotto’s downfall, round three. Pacquiao scored a knockdown but Cotto was able to recover from it and still connects with his punches. Then forth round a clear uppercut to the right chin of Cotto rocked the Puerto Rican sending him to the canvass for the second time that night. With that I believed Cotto’s strength was reduced to half or even more. Starting to doubt himself, his power and his game plan Cotto switch stances and began to backpedal which receives boos from the crowd. Cotto’s game plan change from attack to defense to just survive and ended with referee Bayles stopping the fight on the 12th round.
First the boxers, Cotto was without a doubt strong. It’s just that Manny is stronger. Don’t say things like he’s drained or what. He may be bigger but when they faced each other that night can you honestly say that there is a difference? But as other analyst said, the speed of Manny gives him an edge. Sure Cotto was fast too. He was able to tag Pacquiao with his jabs. But Pacquiao is faster. If you watch the replays you would see Cotto doesn’t have an idea on where the punches where coming from and what part of his body is he going to defend. Pacquiao’s punches were hitting him even before he could close on his gloves. As for Pacquiao’s part, he was able to execute his game plan better than Cotto and he showed he can fight a real welter and has the power to rock even someone like Cotto. From that you can easily assume that the punching power of Pacquiao is either at par with Margarito’s LOADED gloves or even better with blinding speed to be able to knockdown Cotto. The speed multiplied that power. But Pacquiao for me was careless on that fight. He often times, Stands in front of Cotto with his defenses up and literally asking him to hit him with his famous body shots and even allowed Cotto to caught him on the ropes which he could easily rolled out off but he didn’t. For me he is showing to Cotto that he can take his shots and that made Cotto doubt his ability. But Pacquiao didn’t have to do that. He just risked having unwanted injuries. He was already winning. He could avoid Cotto’s punches but he didn’t. He walked through them. He showed toughness.
For the corner, Joe Santiago was of no help at all to Cotto. All he could say is “Are you OK?”, or “one more, one more” as if asking him(Cotto) to just survive. He could at least give the guy a third-man’s point view. On how he sees the fight is going. That shows just how inexperienced he is. Nothing can be said on the other corner. Everything is going according to plan.
In the end, Freddie was right with one of his pre-fight comments. I would like to quote this one “We’re gonna make him quit.” That is what they did. Freddie was really unsure if they could knockout Cotto (in spite all the talks about first round KO or whatever round he predicted, its just to get into the heads of the other camp.) but he is sure though that they will make him quit.
Kudos for both fighters. I hope Cotto can bounce back after this loss. I would suggest a more solid staff next time and fight on the odds in favor to you. For Pacquiao, stay humble and don’t get overconfident because that could lead to your downfall.