By Hesiquio Balderas
Oasis Hotel Complex - Manuel Perez 17-8-1 (4 KOS) defeated Jose Miguel Cotto 34-3-1 (24 KOs) to keep the NABA Super lightweight title by winning a ten round split decision in beautiful Cancun, Mexico.
Cotto started by applying pressure over Perez, landing hard combinations to the head and landing the famous "Cotto family" trademark body punch to the liver. It was Cotto dominating the first half of the fight, but around the sixth round - Manuel Perez landed good right hands on Cotto's chin and the Puerto Rican fighter started boxing, moving around the ring and connecting with flurries. Perez continued to pressure Cotto and landed big punches while trying to score a knockout victory.
At the end the day, two judges scored it 96-94 for Perez while the third judge had it 96-95 for Cotto.