One of the most anticipated boxing matches of the year is set to take place at Madison Square Garden in New York City on Dec. 3rd when champion Miguel Cotto of Puerto Rico takes on Mexico’s Antonio Margarito in a WBA Super World Middleweight title fight. There’s a lot of bad blood going into this fight due to the controversy that surrounded their first meeting in 2008.
Margarito beat the previously undefeated Cotto buy an 11th-round TKO in July of that year for the WBA welterweight title and busted up his face in the process. However, he was caught cheating six months later before he left the dressing room in his bout against Shane Mosley. Mosley’s trainer noticed something wrong with the way Margarito’s hands were wrapped and after investigating his hands it was revealed that he has a the hardening substance known as plaster of paris on them.
Boxing fans immediately thought back to Margarito’s fight against Cotto and figured Cotto was on the end of the hardening substance in their bout and that’s why his face was cut, bruised, and swollen so badly in their fight. Since Margarito was caught cheating he took beatings from Mosley and was stopped in the ninth round and then Manny Pacquiao in a 12-round unanimous decision, causing many fans to accuse him of cheating in many of his bouts until he was finally caught.
Margarito was suspended for a year and Cotto has promised to get his revenge on Dec. 3rd. However, this fight was close to being called off as Margarito had to pass an eye exam due to a fractured orbital bone that he suffered from Pacquiao. He finally passed it and the bell is set to ring on Saturday night.
The first fight was one of the best in recent memory and this one should be even better with all of the storylines and drama that surround it. It’s no secret that these two guys don’t like each other and that’s usually a good sign for boxing fans. The 31-year-old Cotto will enter the ring with a 36-2 record with 29 knockouts while the 33-year-old Margarito comes in at 38-7 with 27 KOs. Cotto’s other loss was a 12th-round TKO defeat to Pacquiao in 2009.
This bout will be fought at a catch weight of 153 lbs. and Margarito has a four-inch height advantage as he’s 5-11 as well as a six-inch reach advantage. Both fighters have a lot to prove here as Margarito wants to show the world that he doesn’t need hardened gloves to beat Cotto while Cotto wants to prove the opposite. Of course, if Cotto beats him in the rematch here most fans will automatically assume Margarito’s gloves were padded in their first fight.
Cotto still has to be cautious though and he can’t afford to go all out as soon as the opening bell rings. He needs to take his time and box methodically while going after Margarito when the opportunity presents itself. He can’t afford to leave himself open and needs to keep his emotions in check. Margarito has shown over the years that he can take a punch as well as anybody. His only KO loss came to Mosley. Margarito’s recent eye surgeries could be a factor in this fight as the referee might jump in and stop it if he’s taking a lot of punishment.
Sportsbook 5dimes.com has the odds of Cotto winning the fight are -200 with Margarito’s odds at +170. The odds of it going over 10 ½ rounds are -165 and the odds of it ending before that are +145.
Look for Cotto to avenge their 2008 fight and take this one by a stoppage anytime after the fourth round.
Written by: Ian Palmer
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