Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Without the shadow of a Handwrap: Cotto vs Margarito 2 Aftermath

Cotto vs Margarito 2 (Dec. 3, 2011)
Miguel Angel Cotto exacted revenge on Antonio Margarito Saturday night at the Madison Square Garden scoring with a masterful 10th round stoppage to retain his WBA Super World light middleweight title. Referee Steve Moger, acting to the advice of the ring physician, waived the fight off 3 seconds into the 10th round as Margarito's right eye looks to be in bad shape. With or without the cut, however, it seems Cotto was just too fast and superbly conditioned for Margarito to hang around.

Cotto boxed beautifully in the first round, darting in and out, moving left and right, connecting with combos inside and stinging jabs outside while Margarito dogged him tirelessly timing his right cross. The third round saw Cotto's glancing blow opened a cut on the right eye of Margarito - same cut he suffered in the Pacquiao fight. It was ominous.

From hereon, its Cotto targetting the cut and ever so confident in each round while for Margarito, its evident that the cut was bothering him - that and being without a fight for more than a year, the ring rust showed with his decreased volume of punches. By the eight canto, the right eye of Margarito has swelled and was beginning to close so much so that the ringside physician checked it couple of times before ultimately deciding to discontinue the fight.

What was the black material on the handwrap?
Cotto was the emotional favorite after it was discovered that Margarito was loaded with illegal handwraps going into the Mosley fight. Cotto believed the same kind of handwrap was used in their initial meeting (see image above) although the Margarito camp vehemently denied such allegation.

It was a cross-over fight for both - for Margarito, the right eye raises a concern that if he continue fighting he might risk it being permanently injured. Not to mention the question about his broken orbital bone in the left eye, courtesy also of Pacquiao. This very well may be the Tijuana Tornado's last fight.

For Cotto, meanwhile, its a new lease of life in his boxing career. For one, he vindicated his loss, and two, he appears to be headed for a blockbuster showdown with unbeaten Mexican superstar Saul "Canelo" Alvarez.