Nightmares of Bob Arum, Dreaming of Cotto vs. Margarito

margarito cotto26.07.08 - By Raymond Markarian, photo by Chris Farina/TopRank: After coming down from the nature high of being one day away from arguably the best fight in the Mexican vs. Puerto Rican boxing rivalry since Fernando Vargas lost to Tito Trinidad in December of 2000, there is one question that comes to mind; why are we so lucky?

Then again, why would Bob Arum put Miguel Cotto in the ring with the most avoided fighter in the world in Antonio Margarito?

A loss definitely hurts Cotto more than a victory helps Margarito. If Cotto loses on Saturday night all the momentum he has gained as the newest boxing savior would be thrown out the window. Not to mention, the possible De la Hoya fight in December and loud cries for a Mayweather fight..

So, Bob Arum must have been crazy to throw the Puerto Rican Cotto into Margaritaville right?

Well not exactly. Assuming Miguel Cotto wins on Saturday night and Joshua Clottey defeats Zab Judah the following weekend; Bob Arum has the Puerto Rican star’s next opponent lined up.

Arum told El Nuevo Dia, “If Cotto and Clottey win, it will be easy for me to stage that fight (Cotto vs. Clottey) in Puerto Rico, since both fighters are with my company and I know that Cotto wants to fight again in his country and I know Clottey has no fear or objection to fighting him in Puerto Rico.”

According to Arum, HBO has a tentative date reserved for Cotto’s next fight and Clottey seems to be the next suitable opponent. “We have a reserved date with HBO.” Arum said. “But first Cotto has a great fight ahead of him with Margarito, so we will have to see.”

Is Cotto vs. Margarito just fools gold? It might be to the powers that be at Top Rank.

But, as far as I am concerned, the dream fight is the second coming to boxing worshipism (if that is a word.) In my opinion, win or lose, neither fighter will be the same after Saturday night. Just like Fernando Vargas and Tito Trinidad weren’t the same inside the ring after they squared up.

After Fernando Vargas and Tito Trinidad bashed each others brains in, over the course of 12 rounds, nearly eight years ago, some of the magic that made them champions was lost. In his next fight, Vargas got knocked down in the second round by the journeyman Wilfredo Rivera and Trinidad got knocked out by Bernard Hopkins two fights later.

But, let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. There will be plenty of boxing action to adore tomorrow night. It will be a combustible affair to admire that’s for sure.

So, go ahead and talk all you want about Cotto’s next fight Mr. Bob Arum. It does not faze me because I am still delirious. I am still dreaming. I think I am. I think I am….

Article posted on 25.07.2008

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