by Ronnie Nathanielsz
Pound for pound king Manny Pacquiao and his celebrated trainer Freddie Roach have different views on the outcome of the Miguel Cotto – Floyd Mayweather title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday in a fight card to be telecast on ABC Channel 5 in the Philippines beginning at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday with a replay on Active Television AKTV IBC 13 at 9:00 p.m.
The fight will also be telecast on ABS-CBN’s hugely popular TFC, The Filipino Channel, to the large Filipino audience in the Middle-East.
Pacquiao believes that Cotto (37-2, 30 KO’s), whom he defeated to win the WBO light middleweight welterweight title by a 12th round TKO, has a shot at beating Mayweather (42-0, 26 KO’s) and was confident that Mayweather wouldn’t be able to knock out Cotto.
Roach agreed with the observation that Cotto is too strong and durable for Mayweather to knock out, also backed by his belief that the undefeated Mayweather doesn’t punch as hard as Pacquiao and his hands are somewhat brittle.
However, Roach said he believes Mayweather is too fast and too good defensively for Cotto to overcome and that Mayweather will rip him apart.
Cotto’s pre-fight statement disputes Roach’s theory. The WBA junior middleweight champion has said he is not worried about the vaunted hand-speed of Mayweather pointing out that this isn’t the first time he’s faced a fighter with supposedly quicker hands, citing his wins over champions Zab Judah and Shane Mosley.
Osman Rodriguez of boxingscene.com quotes Cotto who said he has trained for speed, strength and toughness and believes he’s ready to match Mayweather in every category.
Cotto said “if you look back at 2007, that fight with Shane Mosley, everybody said his strength was his quickness against me. I feel prepared enough to be quicker than Mayweather and to be stronger than Mayweather.”