IOWA CITY, IOWA, (BASN)
—Miguel Cotto fights his revenge match against Antonio Margarito in a battle of the boxer-puncher versus the brawler. When the two met originally, the boxer-puncher Cotto wilted under the constant pressure.
Since that fight, much has happened as both fighters have seen their share of tough losses but Margarito has never been the same fighter since he lost to Shane Mosley.
The Mosley fight proved not just a turning point in Margarito’s career as a fighter but it beyond that as he was caught adding plaster to his hands.
Mosley defeated Margarito easily with a eighth round TKO and Pacquaio devastated Margarito over twelve rounds following that as Margarito showed courage in surviving but he took a beating.
The Pacquaio showed Margarito as a brawler losing his edge and there are many who questioned much of what Margarito has accomplished earlier in his career as there is much suspicion about his previous big victories. Labeled a cheater, Margarito is viewed a fighter never as good as his record showed including his victory over Cotto. Since the Mosley fight and the revelation exposed about Margarito’s hands; Cotto believes that his defeat at the hands of Margarito tainted and Cotto now feels that he truly did not lose the fight but it was stolen from him.
Both fighters now view this as a redemption fight since both are at crossroads in their career. For Cotto, he has lost big fights including his bout with Pacquaio and Margarito, so he needs a big victory here. The Margarito fight was his first loss and this fight might be the one that grates on him the worse since he was winning the fight early before the power and strength of Margarito wore him down and forced an early stoppage. Cotto is the better technician but he is always been willing to exchange blows toe to toe but against a brawler like Margarito, he did not have the power to last out the fight but there is now those doubts if this fight was indeed a fair fight.
For Magarito, this fight means much as well since he must prove that many of his early victories including against Cotto were not the results of having “hands of plaster.” Against Mosley and Pacquaio, both fighters used their quicker hands to beat Margarito to the punch, time after time and those punches wore the bigger Margarito down and there are those who would argue that maybe those previous victories were the results of something more than Margarito’s strength.
Going into this fight, Margarito’s eyes were considered suspect as he had eye problems that needed to be resolved; so there is a question about Margarito’s health and durability since his pounding at the hand of Pacquaio. When facing Cotto, he will be facing a very good fighter but not an elite fighter like Mosley or Pacquaio and Cotto has been in his own wars. The real question that will surface which fighter is closer to the end of his career?
To view this fight is not judge the actual skills of each fighter but which fighter still has more of those skills left.
Cotto is a better technical fighter but he has been involved in tough fights so the question is whether he has much left in his arsenal.
Margarito last fight with Pacquaio showed an old fighter who was consistently beaten to the punch but worse, he was a beaten fighter who needed to go to hospital after the fight and before that was the Mosley beat down.
When you add the time off due to being suspended, he may be closer to the end of his career.
When a fighter’s health is in doubt and Margarito’s eyes were not cleared to fight until recently so that could be a telling sign that maybe Margarito’s health is not 100 percent for what it should be for a fight of this magnitude. If this is the case, then Cotto will win the fight. So this is a fight that you betting on which fighter is more worn down by his career and that would appear to be Margarito. Margarito does have the knowledge that a loss here and his career is essentially over, so the question remains, will this be enough to will him to victory? Cotto has defeated Mayorga and Yuri Foreman whereas Margarito lost two of his last three fights. This is a tough bout to call because there is more than skills involved and much guess work considering the mindset of each fighter and their true health. Cotto may have the slight edge and we will find out Saturday night if this is the case.