Floyd Mayweather calls him a “silent killer” in the ring, and that’s how Miguel Cotto prefers it, not just in the ring, but in his lifestyle as well.
“It’s my way of life,” Cotto said at his pre-fight media workout last week in Orlando. “I prefer to be quiet, I prefer to be a calm guy and just do my thing.”
Cotto is relying on “his thing” to be successful as he prepares for the biggest fight of his career, a May 5th matchup with undefeated Floyd “Money” Mayweather in the Super Welterweight World Championship at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
Cotto, a four-time, three-division World Champion, is training for the 154-pound main event bout with trainer Pedro Diaz in Orlando in what could be the highlight of the 31-year-old’s career or the surrendering of his WBA Super Welterweight title.
Cotto (37-2, 30 KO’s) knows what’s at stake as he takes the canvas with one of boxing’s most storied fighters, one who is risking his perfect record and reputation.
“I’m here for one purpose and that’s victory on May 5th,” Cotto said.
Cotto is coming fresh from a hard-fought victory over Antonio Margarito last December, in which Cotto won by technical knockout in a 10-round thriller, the second defense of his current title.
The Puerto Rican-native got revenge against Margarito after suffering the first loss of his pro career to him back in 2008. With the win, he solidified his confidence as he heads into the 154-pound matchup against the heavily-favored Mayweather.
Cotto has held a world title every year since 2004, with 16 wins in 18 world championships bouts that he’s participated in.
Cotto, who possesses four titles in three different divisions, won his first world championship in 2004, beating Kelson Pinto for the WBO junior welterweight crown.
Since then, he’s defeated Shane Mosley by decision in 2007, Alfonso Gomez by knockout in 2008, and won the WBO welterweight title from Michael Jennings in 2009.
Then he ran into Manny Pacquiao in late 2009, where he would fall short of victory via 12th round TKO. The loss to Pacquiao was just the second loss of his pro career
Still, Cotto rebounded strong, winning his third and current division title in 2010 against Yuri Foreman. Cotto defended that belt for the first time vs. former champion Ricardo Mayorga, notching a 12th round TKO to retain it.
On the other side, Mayweather, at 42-0 with 26 KO’s, is returning to the ring after a highly controversial win against Victor Ortiz last September. Mayweather knocked out Ortiz after his competitor gave him an intentional head butt, which followed with Ortiz kissing Mayweather’s neck as an apology, before Mayweather took him down with two punches as Ortiz had his hands lying idly.
Despite the odd sequence of events, Money took the WBC Welterweight belt to maintain his unblemished record.
Mayweather, who is a seven-time, five-division world champion, has steamrolled through multiple weight classes in his career, but is entering the 154-pound division for the first time in five years.
“It will be a challenge for me to compete with him at this weight, but this is the type of test I thrive on and gives me the motivation to train even harder,” Mayweather said.
Tale Of The Tape- Miguel Cotto
Hometown: Caguas,Puerto Rico
Record: 37-2-0, 30 KO’s
Tale Of The Tape- Floyd Mayweather
Record: 42-0-0, 26 KO’s
Weight: 154 lbs.
This will undoubtedly be the toughest matchup of Miguel Cotto’s career, especially after some of his weaknesses were displayed in his defeat to Manny Pacquiao.
Mayweather presents an unprecedented combination of speed, power and instinct that will be a challenge for Cotto to handle even with his advantage in age and muscle.
On top of that, Mayweather’s defensive scheme will make it difficult for Cotto to overpower him with crosses and combinations. While Cotto recognizes Mayweather’s defensive abilities, Cotto remains confident.
“His defense is his best weapon. We are preparing ourselves, and everybody is going to see May 5th,” Cotto said. “We’re going to exploit everything we can on May 5th to get a victory.”
Cotto is known for his jab, a quick and powerful one, which he utilizes against opponent’s bodies. He will need to employ this, along with his edge in natural size, if he’s going to pull off the upset over Mayweather.
Despite Mayweather being the one that had to move up in weight class, he still has a big advantage in agility and defense, as well as a 5-inch reach advantage.
Even with Cotto’s potent offense and deadly jab, he doesn’t have very quick feet and his stamina is nowhere near the level of Mayweather.
It’s likely that Mayweather will adapt to anything that Cotto throws at him, and will utilize his defensive skill set to wear Cotto down and ultimately outlast him.
Cotto has a puncher’s chance because of his heart, dedication and power, but I expect Money Mayweather to remain undefeated.
“I have no doubt in my mind that my title belt collection will increase once again, and Cotto’s reign as champion will come to an end on May 5,” Mayweather said.
Be sure to tune live on HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 9 p.m. on May 5.