While preparing to batter junior middleweight champion “No Doubt” Austin Trout for his belt on December 1 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, powerful Puerto Rican icon Miguel Cotto vigorously disputed promoter Bob Arum’s claim that he was offered $13 million to fight Manny Pacquiao.
Cotto (37-3, 30 KOs), a four-time world titlist in three weight divisions, last threw fists on Cinco de Mayo when he relinquished the WBA world light-welterweight crown via unanimous decision to Floyd Mayweather (43-0, 26 KOs) in a memorably bruising and bloody bout.
Conversely, the 33-year-old Pacquiao (54-4-2, 38 KOs), voted “Fighter of the Decade” for the 2000s by the BWAA, will battle Juan Manuel Marquez for a fourth time on December 8 at the MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The tough native of Caguas, who fought gamely in against the usually untouchable Mayweather, suffered a savage TKO defeat to Pacquiao in November 2009.
However, Cotto and Pacquiao were both far different prizefighters three years ago and they clashed then at a catchweight of 145 pounds.
“The only offer Top Rank ever made us was the same money as in 2009,” said Cotto, 31. “[Arum] made the same offer he made in 2009, and we found it kind of funny. That was the reason we decided not to face Pacquiao. That, and they also wanted me to go down to 150 pounds and give him the same advantage that they gave Pacquiao in 2009, a catchweight.”
The fearless 5-foot-7 brawler continued to chastise Arum.
“Bob said he offered us $13 million, but he never came to us with that offer,” Cotto said. “He always offered us the same guarantee he offered us in 2009, with the same benefits, and that’s not fair. He offered the exact same amount of money. Of course it’s a business, but all we want is fair business. You can say to Bob to tell me he made that offer to me to my face, and you will see his reaction. Miguel Cotto always agrees to fight the best. I’ve never said no to anybody, but you need to treat me fairly in business.”
Roger “Pit” Perron is a venerable boxing trainer from Brockton (Mass.) who now works with Mike and Rich Cappiello at their gym, Cappiello Brothers Boxing and Training.
Perron adamantly stated that Cotto is far from being a shopworn pugilist.
“Cotto isn’t done yet. He proved that against that scumbag (Antonio) Margarito and against Floyd,” said Perron, 75, who worked with Marvelous Marvin Hagler. “He (Cotto) is a true fighter in every sense.”
The 26-year-old Trout (25-0, 14 KOs), a native of Las Cruces, New Mexico, is a solid prizefighter looking for his first win over a marquee name.
Unfortunately for the seemingly likable Trout, he has absolutely no chance to trump a reenergized Cotto in front of thousands of Puerto Ricans in roughly two months.
Still in his prime, brimming with confidence, and flourishing under the tutelage of new trainer Pedro Diaz, Cotto remains one of the greatest pugilists in the world today.
“Miguel Cotto always agrees to fight the best” and Bob Arum is undoubtedly lying in an effort to protect the image of his primary moneymaker, Manny Pacquiao.by