Cotto/Judah: Analysis & Prediction

08.06.07 - By Yero Moody: For fight fans 2007 has been great thus far with more great match-ups to come. We still have Ricky Hatton v. Jose Castillo, Antonio Margarito v. Paul Williams, Bernard Hopkins v. Ronald "Winky" Wright and hopefully Joe Calzaghe v. Mikkel Kessler although something tells me Calzaghe will be fighting in another subpar fight against another C level fighter. Even if that fight doesn't happen this year 2007 has been great! Although Floyd Mayweather and Oscar De La Hoya didn't deliver the goods as they both said they would at least they fought each other finally..

Tomorrow we are going to see Zab Judah and Miguel Cotto meeting in a fight that should be called the crossroads. For Judah this fight has major implications. Should he win he will still be very much in the mix and prime to take on the elite fighters in the welterweight and super welterweight divisions. Should he lose he will be written off as a fighter who never had the mental fortitude to match his tremendous physical abilities.

For Cotto, he too is at a crossroad. Should he win he will also be primed and ready to take on the elite. Should he lose he will be seen as a fighter who failed his first test against a great fighter and all the questions about his chin and/or lack of defense will resurface.

I like this match-up and both fighters need this fight to take them to the next level. So let's get down to business; who wins and why. Zab Judah has the advantage in experience, no question. He's been in the ring with much more quality opposition than Cotto has by a wide margin. Cotto's biggest test in most people's opinion was against a rising upstart in Carlos Quintana although I feel his biggest test was against DeMarcus Corley. A test he passed with an asterick* beside it.

He came in outweighing Corley by well over 10lbs and despite his huge weight advantage he was buckled and hurt by the smaller Corley. Cotto has the advantage in mental fortitude by a wide margin. Cotto has proven time and again that he can overcome his weaknesses and still win. Judah has failed miserably in this category. He was outboxing Kostya Tsyzu until he put his hands down despite his father's repeated warnings not to do so and got caught with a hard shot that ended the fight. He is clearly a better fighter than Cory Spinks and had to fight a rematch with him to prove it. He lost to a journeyman fighter, Carlos Baldomir, whom he should've blown off the map had he not been looking ahead to a fight against Floyd Mayweather.

Let's discuss the last but definitely not the least important category, skill. In fact, this is the most important element. This is another category that Zab Judah has the advantage. He is has better overall ring generalship, he's much faster, he sets up his punches better and his defense is an entirely different stratosphere than Cotto's. Judah also has better footwwork and lateral movements than does Cotto. The only area that Cotto dominates Judah in is powerpunching, especially to the body. Much like Floyd Mayweather's superb defense was able to prevent Oscar De La Hoya from landing his biggest weapon, the left hook I believe that Zab Judah will be able to use his lateral movements to offest Cotto's vicious body attack. The question remains as to what Judah will do once Cotto lands a hard shot or two which he will do.

My prediction: Zab Judah wins this one by unanimous decision or TKO. His skills are going to be too much for Cotto and he will make Cotto look like an amateur. I like Miguel Cotto as a person. He has one of the traits that most big time fighters lack and that is humility. However, I see too many weaknesses in his fighting style to be able to beat a fighter like Zab Judah. Cotto's lack of defense, poor lateral movement and the speed deficit spell doom for him.

Questions or comments: E-mail me at

Article posted on 09.06.2007

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