Boxing

Miguel Cotto Interview

miguel CottoMIGUEL COTTO: This is just another fight for me. Itís a fight that Margarito wants to take my title Ė and that makes it big enough for me. Margarito is a great fighter. I have trained to win this fight and that is all thatís on my mind right now Ė win this fight. I feel the same right now, in this fight with Margarito, as I do going into most of my fights.

This is going to be a battle in the ring. Everyone that shows up is going to see a real battle because he is trying to take my title away.

Do you prepare differently because you may get more punishment than in your last few fights?

MIGUEL COTTO: When I train, I try to get my body in the best shape that I can. I have trained so hard for Margarito that my trainers know that I have nothing left to give..

What about the Mexican vs. Puerto Rican rivalry?

MIGUEL COTTO: Any time you have a Puerto Rican and a Mexican fight it makes me think of the Gomez- Sanchez fight and the Pintor-Gomez fight and the Oscar De La Hoya Ė Trinidad fight. Miguel Cotto vs. Antonio Margarito will put this fight at the same level as those.

Which is your first memory of the rivalry and do you feel a passion?

MIGUEL COTTO: I think Gomez is the first memory I have of the rivalry. The moment that you donít feel a passion for preparing to get into the ring for any fight Ė that is when you have quit on the job. Everybody knows about the rivalry. Now it is me against Margarito. This fight will add another shot to the rivalry.

What about your legacy?

MIGUEL COTTO: I always climb in the ring to win the fight. If you ask me to put me on a scale with other boxers I am going to put Miguel Cotto as high on the list as I can Ė but only with my success in the ring. I cannot tell you that I deserve a ranking. My job is to train and to box. The people that write about boxing will decide my ranking and my legacy.

BOB ARUM: As far as Miguel Cotto is concerned he is training and going into the ring to win the fight like a great fighter does. He goes in the ring to win. The legacy is determined later by the people who write about the sport. Just like the president of the United States. He has to do the best, in his mind, for the country and his job is graded later by pundits and writers Ė the determination being if he was a good president, a great president or a poor president. Itís the same thing with Miguel Cotto. He is focused on winning this fight and the determination of his legacy comes afterward

MIGUEL COTTO: I try to bring the best Miguel Cotto into the ring that I possibly can, you know? The determination and dedication in the last three years for me, the people that write about boxing see the pleasure Miguel Cotto brings into the ring. The Miguel Cotto that can box and can move. When there is someone that can do that Ė you are a complete boxer. They are the kind of fighters that people want to see. Someone would remember Miguel Cotto in those kinds of fights is proof that the hard work pays off.

With a win, what do you think would happen to your Pound-4-pound ranking?

MIGUEL COTTO: I trained hard for 9 or 10 weeks to win and return to Puerto Rico with my belt. I had a really good camp and when I beat Margarito it is not up to myself to decide that. I will do my work in the ring the best I can. The writers and the people who know about boxing who make those lists can answer that question.

Do you think it will be a pro-Mexican crowd since it is in Vegas?

MIGUEL COTTO: I do not worry about that. It does not matter to me what kind of person is watching the fight because when we get in the ring it is only Margarito and me.

Did you talk to Tito about this rivalry?

MIGUEL COTTO: I donít have to talk to anyone about this rivalry. I only need to know about Margarito and myself.

How is your body since you have been fighting at 147?

MIGHEL COTTO: When you destroy yourself to make a lower weight you suffer the consequences in the ring. Now I feel more comfortable at 147 pounds and the people that see my fights at 147 can see that.

BOB ARUM: After his last fight at 140, Todd duBoef took Miguel to a high velocity trainer in Los Angeles and they did a complete evaluation. They said you have to be crazy to fight Miguel at 140 pounds because in order to make the weight he was burning muscle. In the 24 hours between the weigh-in and the fight, he put the weight back on but he didnít put the muscle back on. Therefore he was getting tired in the ring and he was getting weak and getting wobbled by punches. 147 is his natural weight and it has been tremendous for him. The change has been dramatic since he has moved to 147.

Do you know your game plan fight the fight with Margarito?

MIGUEL COTTO: I try to use everything that we have worked on in the camp and I will benefit from that work. I will feel better in the ring in the beginning of the fight because that is when the game plan is at its best.

Do you think there will be less boxing/more punching because of this heated rivalry?

MIGUEL COTTO: I will use whatever I need to use to win this fight. I canít tell you what style I will have to use and until I get in the ring I donít know what style will win this fight Ė move or box. But I will try to use everything and I always feel better when I do that.

Comparisons to other great Puerto Rican fighters?

MIGUEL COTTO: A lot of people will compare me to the great Puerto Rican fighters. I donít compare myself to the other greats. I just try to do my work to win for me and my family and my country and the people who root for me.

What goals do you have in boxing?

MIGUEL COTTO: To show my ability and to show my skills in the ring. I try to maintain like a champion. My goal when I began was to become a champion with the belts. I am pretty happy with my career up to now. I am happy with the managers of my career and I am happy with myself. I train very hard to show my ability and my skills in the ring. If there is something left to better my career it would only be to get better. Every boxerís goal is to become a champion. Then you become a champion and you try to maintain yourself as a champion.

How about 8 oz gloves compared to 10 oz?

MIGUEL COTTO: It doesnít make a difference to me. When I box, 2 ounces is not that much of a difference.

What about fighting in Las Vegas for the first time in a long time?

MIGUEL COTTO: Everywhere is good. Madison Square Garden had a lot of people from Puerto Rico to cheer me on and help with my performance. Now I go to a new place Ė MGM in Las Vegas. I am going to have a lot of fun there.

Are you upset you wonít get a chance to fight Mayweather and why do you think he retired?

MIGUEL COTTO: I think Mayweather retired because he thought that would be the best for him. I canít answer a question like that Ė the only person that can answer that is Mayweather. Margarito is my upcoming fight on July 26 and Mayweather retired and my career has to continue and there are a lot of big names at 147 lbs. to make good fights. I canít be upset because my career is great. I am always going to fight whoever my company puts in front of me.

Whatís are your feelings on the fight?

BOB ARUM: I promote both of these fighters and each came to us in a completely different way. Miguel we had from the beginning right out of the Olympics and Antonio Margarito had quite a few fights before coming to us. They are both terrific fighters and the one thing I take pleasure in is that the battle of these two guys are in the biggest fight in years and in a fight that is attracting a lot of attention and they are both treated with dignity and first class. We have special buses that each will be traveling in during fight week. Each is treated like a true champion and Bob Arum will be sitting at ringside with the outcome having absolutely no affect on me Ė thatís how I like it.


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Remaining tickets, priced at $700, $500, $300, $200 and $100, can be purchased at the MGM Grand Garden Arena box office and at all Las Vegas Ticketmaster locations (select Smithís Food and Drug Centers, Macyís West at the Fashion Show Mall, and Ritmo Latino.) Ticket sales are limited to eight (8) per person. To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (702) 474-4000 or MGM Grand at (800) 929-1111. Tickets are also available for purchase at www.mgmgrand.com or www.ticketmaster.com

The Cotto vs. Margarito pay-per-view telecast, beginning at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT, has a suggested retail price of $49.95, will be produced and distributed by HBO Pay-Per-View and will be available to more than 71 million pay-per-view homes. The telecast will be available in HD-TV for those viewers who can receive HD. HBO Pay-Per-View is the leading supplier of event programming to the pay-per-view industry. For Cotto vs. Margarito fight week updates, log on to www.hbo.com.

Article posted on 19.07.2008



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