By Keith Idec
NEW YORK — Floyd Mayweather Jr. was more than willing to challenge Miguel Cotto at 154 pounds.
The undefeated five-division champion didn’t want his May 5 fight against Cotto to be contested somewhere between 154 and 147 pounds because Cotto contends part of the reason he was depleted when he lost to Manny Pacquiao was because their welterweight championship match was contested at a catch weight.
“As far as Pacquiao versus Cotto, he fought him at a catch weight,” Mayweather said following a press conference at the Apollo Theater. “So it was a drained Cotto. So I’m going into this fight looking at Cotto as an undefeated fighter. He fought one guy [Antonio Margarito] that was cheating and he fought another guy at a catch weight. I wanted to fight him at 154, so there won’t be any excuses.”
That said, there’s another number Mayweather would like to alter the night they fight for Cotto’s WBA super welterweight title at MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Mayweather (42-0, 26 KOs) said he has requested that the Nevada State Athletic Commission allow him and Cotto (37-2, 30 KOs) to wear eight-ounce gloves during their 12-round fight.
Association of Boxing Commission rules state that boxers must wear 10-ounce gloves for fights above the welterweight limit of 147 pounds, but Mayweather is holding out hope.
“[Against] Oscar De La Hoya, they gave me heavyweight gloves,” Mayweather said regarding his last fight at 154 pounds, nearly five years ago. “We are requesting eight-ounce gloves. Hopefully we’ll get it. If not, we’ll go with the tens. We want eights. We want blood, sweat and tears.”
Keith Idec covers boxing for The Record and Herald News, of Woodland Park, N.J., and BoxingScene.com.