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Will Pacquiao drag Cotto down to 147 to fight him?

Manny Pacquiao Miguel CottoBy Chris Williams: If Miguel Cotto wants the big money rematch with Manny Pacquiao that he’s been after since getting thrashed by him in 2009, Cotto will likely have to play it by Pacquiao’s rules by coming all the way down to 147lbs rather than the Filipino star agreeing to fight him at a catchweight like he did the last time the two fighters fought.

Cotto, the WBO welterweight champion at the time, had to come down to 145 to accommodate Pacquiao in order to get the fight. Pacquiao recently fought Antonio Margarito at a catchweight of 150lbs for the vacant WBC junior middleweight 154lb title in November 2010. But it doesn’t look like Pacquiao is willing to do the same thing for Cotto.

I wonder if that has anything to do with Cotto fighting at a higher level than Margarito with more speed than the Mexican had left when he fought Pacquiao? Margarito was pretty badly depleted by the time Pacquiao got to him. Pacquiao doesn’t want to fight above 147.

That suggests that if Cotto wants the fight, he’s going to have to give in and drain himself to make the weight. There’s probably going to be more issues as well besides just this. There’s the money split as well. Cotto probably will want more money that he got last he fought Paquiao. Will he get what he wants?

I wouldn’t bet on it. Pacquiao is getting over $20 million per fight nowadays and in order to get that big money, he needs a big percentage advantage over his opposition. With Cotto asking for good money as well, that could take a slice out of Pacquiao’s take home pay. Will he let Pacquiao get the money he wants?

I don’t know but I’m betting he won’t. Cotto may get a take it or leave it offer for this fight, because Bob Arum has two additional opponents – Lamont Peterson and Timothy Bradley – that will likely accept a lot less than Cotto and be more than happy to take what they can get.

If I was Cotto, I wouldn’t agree to the rematch taking place at 147. Sure, Cotto would make good money by agreeing to that, but at what cost to his health? Cotto would almost surely be drained and would take another beating from Pacquiao. Those beatings shorten careers and it’s not really worth it for Cotto when he’s already for life with a lot of money in the bank and can make excellent money fighting softer guys that Arum sets up for him. Why should Cotto agree to 147 and risk ruining his career? Look what happened to Margarito when he drained himself to fight Pacquiao? He took a beating.

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