Well here were are, just hours away from Cotto Vs Margarito II, and I’m finally getting a chance to write this. As many boxing writers have already said, this is the biggest grudge match boxing has seen in a long time. These two men have a deep hatred of one another and they will get their chance to leave it all in the ring tonight and tonight only. To put it bluntly, if Cotto wins that means Margarito used the plaster in their first fight, and Cotto’s claims of Margarito being a cheater and a criminal will be justified. If Margarito wins, whether he used plaster in their first meeting or not, he is the better fighter. He also claims to have not used the plaster hand wraps in the first fight so tonight is his chance to prove his claim once and for all.
I think Max Kellerman said it the best, “How much of Margarito’s success was based on his plaster wraps?” It is something we all want to know now. All anyone knows for sure is that Margarito tried to use the plaster in his first title defense against Shane Mosely. Without the plaster, Margarito was destroyed and suffered his first ever T.K.O. defeat. Jim Lampley even said after the fight that the hard pounding shots that Margarito rained down on Cotto were absent against Mosely, which immediately gave rise to the suspicions of Margarito using the illegal wraps against Cotto. Cotto was one of the few who wasn’t quick to point the finger at Margarito, and Jim Lampley sat down one on one with him and asked him why he recently has decided to make the claim that Margarito cheated in their first throw down. Cotto’s answer was simply, he only said “Pictures.” The pictures that Cotto uses to support his claim are pretty undeniable. The red on the plaster from the court evidence is highly incriminating, you have to admit.
Then there is Margarito. He still claims that he has done nothing wrong and that he had no knowledge of the plaster being used on his hand wraps. I find this very hard to believe and I absolutely hate the way he threw his trainer under the bus and forced him to take all the blame for the incident. I don’t know though, I feel there is a lot going on behind the scenes with Margarito that everyone seems to be missing. His trainer claims he didn’t know the wraps were loaded when he put them on Antonio’s hands and if that is true, then who did know? Who was the one who put the wraps there in the first place? Something just isn’t right about this but oh well. It’s over and done with. I think one thing that Margarito has done extremely well in this whole build up, is assume the role of the bad guy. He keeps his sunglasses on constantly, and I don’t think it has anything to do with his eye. I think that he thinks it makes him look more mysterious, and more evil, so he is running with it. He will probably even wear them all the way up until when he is inside the ring, the way most boxers wear their crosses.
My prediction for this fight is as follows. (I will post the results right beneath this once the fight is over tonight.) I believe that this fight will be all Miguel Cotto. Cotto demonstrated in the first fight that he can outbox Margarito with ease, and he did just that until the 7th round. In the 7th he lost steam, he was clearly exhausted and that exhaustion caused him to lose his speed, his footwork and most importantly his power. He had nothing left to throw at Margarito and Margarito took advantage. He did what he has always done in his career, he moved forward and kept throwing punches, and if Cotto couldn’t throw back, or escape he was done for. There is no way Miguel has forgotten any of that. He is going to make sure he does not make the same mistake twice and will do a much better job of conserving his energy. He has an ability to stay away from Margarito’s body shots, and as long as he keeps doing that he will be in fantastic shape. Miguel Cotto has plenty of power when facing any top level fighter, but Margarito’s chin is pure diamond. The guy broke his right orbital bone in the 4th round against Manny Pacquio and he just kept on fighting. Pacquio couldn’t even stagger him, even when he was landing hard right hands on Margarito’s already broken right eye. Cotto simply does not have the power it takes to stop a man like Margarito, and there is nothing wrong with that, because apparently only Shane Mosely has that kind of power (had that kind of power). So with all that being said, I believe Miguel Cotto will win this fight by out boxing Margarito for all 12 rounds, and will therefore win by Unanimous Decision.
Results: Well I had the winner right. Cotto dominated the entire fight, and he did exactly what he said he was going to do. He destroyed Margarito’s right eye, and even though the eye didn’t look nearly as bad as it did when Pacquio broke it, the doctors called the fight just as the 10th round was about to begin, giving Cotto a 10th round T.K.O. victory. The fight looked very similar to their first meeting, except Cotto appeared to never run out of gas. I for one believe that this was more than enough proof that Margarito used the plaster in their first meeting, and without the damaging blows from his plaster fists this time around, Cotto had a much easier time controlling the pace. I feel bad for Margarito though, it appears his career is practically done for, and without the plaster on his fists he is not the Express Train he once was.