By Luis Samdoval
Puerto Rican superstar Miguel Cotto is on a mission to do something none of his countrymen have been able to do in boxing and that is win four titles in four different weight classes. Cotto will be making a venture into the middleweight division and will have to defeat current champion Sergio Martinez in order to secure his mark in the history books.
Cotto is currently in Los Angeles putting the final touches on his training camp at the famed Wild Card Gym and from speaking to head trainer Freddie Roach, everything has been going as planned and they are ready for whatever Martinez may bring.
“It’s going great. We’ve had some great sparring, we’ve had some really great southpaws. We had a couple 147 pounders in here for speed, we’ve had a couple light heavyweights for strength. Whatever Martinez brings to the table, we’re ready for. I know he’s fast and a good runner but if he decides to run, we will cut the ring off. We will control the ring” Roach would tell BoxingScene.
Martinez has been regarded as one of the most talented and best fighters in the sport. He’s considered the man to beat at Middleweight and even though he’s a bit older and coming off knee surgery, his ability to blend his athleticism and his boxing skill has made him a difficult fighter to beat.
Roach agrees Martinez is a great athlete but he doesn’t think much of him as a fighter.
“He’s very fast, he’s very speedy and so forth. He’s a great athlete yes, but he’s not a great fighter. He’s not a great boxer. He has no defense whatsoever and I think we’re going to knock him out inside of 4 [rounds]” Roach boldly predicted.
Cotto isn’t the biggest fighter and will be at a size disadvantage against Martinez much like he was against Austin Trout in December of 2012. Trout’s height and reach advantage posed problems for Cotto as he was thoroughly out boxed over 12 rounds.
Going into a fight with another southpaw who has a similar height and reach advantage, Roach was asked what would be different this time around.
“The thing is he didn’t show up for that [Trout] fight. I asked him what the hell was wrong with you? You didn’t even throw a left hook to the body once” said Roach as he chuckled. “He just told me training camp wasn’t going well and that’s why I’m here and the other guys aren’t. We have a good rapport together and he’s a much better fighter. He’s much smarter. His left hook is much more refined than ever. I’m just really happy how disciplined he is and how his work ethic is so great and how he listens to me. He’s just a great guy to work with”.
Cotto will try to erase the bad memories of his last and only defeat at Madison Square Garden as a victory will not only equal ecoming a champion once again but also cementing himself in the boxing and Puerto Rican history books.
You can follow Luis Sandoval on Twitter & Instagram @Truewest007.