By Rick Reeno
Freddie Roach, trainer of WBC middleweight champion Miguel Cotto (39-4, 32KOs), says Saul "Canelo" Alvarez (44-1-1, 31KOs) is a "very makeable fight."
Both fighters are scheduled to see action in the fall against unknown opponents. Canelo will either return at the end of November or a date in December. Cotto is penciled in for a date of December 13th at New York's Madison Square Garden.
If both fighters are successful, their respective camps will likely begin negotiations for a May showdown.
"I think [Canelo is] a solid fighter, a pretty good puncher, but nothing too great," Roach told BoxingScene.com.
Roach was a very interested observer in Canelo's July fight against WBA 'regular' junior middleweight champion Erislandy Lara. Canelo won a close twelve round majority decision. There were some conflicting opinions over which fighter deserved the decision, but Roach felt the right man won.
"It's very hard to give the decision to the guy who doesn't engage, moves away and so forth. I know [Lara is] a good boxer and so forth but the close rounds you have to give them to the aggressor," Roach said.
The details of Cotto's training camp is still undetermined. Roach will spend several weeks in the Philippines training Manny Pacquiao for his fight with Chris Algieri on November 22nd in Macau, China.
Because their return dates are so close, Roach is attempting to persuade Cotto to train side by side with Pacquiao in Asia - which in turn allows Roach to train both of them for their scheduled commitments.
According to sources, Cotto is not overly excited with the idea of having his training camp in the Philippines.
Roach already has a backup plan in motion - where Cotto would remain in the United States and train for four weeks at Hollywood's Wild Card Gym with Roach's assistant, Marvin Somodio. Once Pacquiao's fight concludes, Roach would return to California to train Cotto for the remaining three weeks of camp.
"We talked today a little bit about that, about [Cotto] coming to the Philippines. I like that, him pushing Manny a little bit and me and Manny pushing him a little bit. It would be a good scene. We're not quite there. I might have Marvin watch him for four weeks at my gym and then I'll have three weeks to tune him up for the fight," Roach said.