By Jake Donovan
Once upon a time, you couldn’t get Miguel Cotto to offer more than “I fight who they put in front of me” whenever the question surfaced of what awaited his future.
These days, Cotto doesn’t even care about the fighter in from of him.
“I am not thinking about Austin Trout. I’m thinking about myself,” Cotto emphatically stated when asked what he’s expecting from his next opponent. “I put myself through a tough training camp and am ready for whatever he brings to the ring on December 1.”
Cotto’s attempt at a fifth title reign in three weight classes comes this Saturday at Madison Square Garden against the unbeaten Trout (25-0, 14KO). It wasn’t his first choice as an opponent.
As was the case 12 months ago almost to the day, Cotto hoped to end 2012 with another shot at redemption. Those plans fell apart with Manny Pacquiao - against whom Cotto suffered a 12th round stoppage loss in Nov. ’09 – once again tried to force the Puerto Rican’s hand at the negotiating table.
Once that fight fell through, Cotto simply scanned the best opportunity out there.
“Everybody knows that Miguel Cotto doesn’t take easy fights,” Cotto reminds the masses. “Austin Trout was next in line. I went after him. Now we will see what happens on Saturday. I’m training very hard and am prepared for whatever Austin Trout has to bring to the ring. I am certain that on Saturday evening everyone will see the best Miguel Cotto.”
A win would give Cotto a second title reign at 154. The Puerto Rican superstar saw a near two-year reign come to an end this past May, dropping a unanimous decision to Floyd Mayweather in a competitive out. Perhaps another revenge-fueled rematch is in the cards for next year, much as he aggressively pursued a sequel with Antonio Margarito late last year.
Whatever’s in the cards for Cotto in 2013 will have to wait until then before such plans are revealed - or at least until Sunday morning.
“I am not thinking at all about 2013,” Cotto insists. “My focus is solely on what will take place December 1 at Madison Square Garden. I’m ready to face Austin on Saturday. I’m here to win and I will not rest until I get that win.”
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter: @JakeNDaBox