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Roach: Sergio Martinez is going to need a lot of luck against Cotto

roach34By Dan Ambrose: Miguel Cotto (38-4, 31 KO’s) will be an underdog this Saturday night in his title fight against WBC middleweight champion Sergio Martinez (51-2-2, 28 KO’s) in Madison Square Garden, New York, but don’t tell that to Cotto’s trainer Freddie Roach. He feels that it’s the 39-year-old Martinez who should be the underdog in this fight because he thinks he’s got the better guy in Cotto due to his training.

Roach’s main contribution to changing Cotto’s fighting technique since taking over as his new trainer last year was to have him throw more left hooks. From appearances, Cotto looks totally unchanged from before. If there is a change it’s so incredibly small that it’s difficult to really detect.

“Miguel is the most disciplined fighter that I have ever trained,” Roach said at today’s press conference. “I’d like to wish Martinez good luck. He’s going to need it.”

Roach and Cotto are hoping that Martinez chooses to go to war on Saturday night, because they both feel that a toe-to-toe fight favors their side rather than Martinez. It remains to be seen whether that’ll in fact be the case if Martinez does decide for some reason to fight Cotto’s fight.

The only way that we’ll likely see Sergio break discipline and get in the trenches with Sergio is if his knee gives out on him. He’s not going to be wearing his knee brace on Saturday night because the New York State Athletic Commission reportedly has ruled that he can’t wear it to protect his surgically repaired right knee. This means anything can happen with his knee, because it could very well give out on him once he starts moving around the ring and fighting at a fast pace.

“I come prepared. I come to box. I come to fight,” Martinez said. “I come to be in a war. On Saturday we’ll finish the talking and see the reality.”
It looks like Martinez is going to do a little bit of slugging and boxing. That’s typical of his style of fighting. When he sees an opening, he’s going to nail Cotto with his shots. But other than that, we’ll likely be seeing Martinez moving around the ring constantly to avoid the bull-like attacks from Cotto.

“I’m prepared for a war,” Cotto said. “It’s good for us to hear Sergio is ready for a war too, because that’s what people are going to see. A real war.”

Cotto really needs Sergio to make it a war, because otherwise he’s just too little to fight him with Sergio standing on the outside and using his six inch reach advantage to pound Cotto with jabs all night to soften up his face. If Sergio fights Cotto like he did Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. in 2012, then Cotto won’t stand a chance.

“I’m sorry Freddie, but for the second time in a row, you’ll be 0-2,” said Sergio’s trainer Pablo Sarmiento to Roach.

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