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Mayweather vs. Cotto: 12 Reasons the Fight Was Worth Every PPV Penny

Joseph Carlo HerreraContributor IIIMay 7, 2012

Mayweather vs. Cotto: 12 Reasons the Fight Was Worth Every PPV Penny

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    With tough times being a resounding theme for many around the world, pay-per-view matches can be considered a leisure expenditure for many and even a luxury for others.

    People always want to get the most out of their money, which is why they buy PPV fights they deem exciting to watch.

    Million upon millions of dollars are generated by PPV units and that just proves that human beings don't mind spending a little bit of their money for an overall good time.

    From obsessed fans who purchase fights to stay in the loop to the groups of families and friends that use it as a party incentive and to the numerous businesses that use it as an attraction for customers, people always tend to look back and ask themselves whether or not they got their money's worth.

    The Cinco de Mayo bout between Floyd Mayweather and Miguel Cotto was undoubtedly one of the better PPV matches by far, with both fighters performing so well, but just to go about it and recap, here are 12 reasons why HBO's Ring Kings was worth every cent of the PPV price.

Cinco De Mayo

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    Cinco de Mayo is a day of celebration for the whole gang.

    Originally celebrated in commemoration of Mexico's victory over France in the Battle of Puebla in 1862, the day is also seen as a general celebration of Mexican heritage and pride and the cause of freedom and democracy during the first years of the American Civil war.

    The day is usually filled with feasts and festivities held by not only those in the Mexican community but by all those who appreciate a good time.

    Families and friends have become accustomed to various gatherings during the day and one of the more popular traditions amongst sports fans involved is watching a great boxing PPV.

    Though most are not held exactly on the fifth of May, there is a reason super fights are scheduled at least somewhere around that point of time.

    Oscar De La Hoya can be recognized for pioneering the movement, with fights like those against Ricardo Mayorga, Steve Forbes, Luis Campas and, of course, the all-time highest-selling one with Floyd Mayweather.

    Others have followed suit in the direction of the early May matches, most notably Manny Pacquiao, Shane Mosley, Ricky Hatton and, with this fight marking his third early May outing, Mayweather.

    With friends, family, food and a world title fight, you can't lose.

Carlos Quintana's Knockout of DeAndre Latimore

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    35-year-old former WBO Welterweight Champion, Carlos "El Indio" Quintana, was looking to make a statement coming into his high-profile undercard bout against his much younger opponent, 26-year-old DeAndre Latimore.

    After suffering an eighth-round technical knockout at the hands of Andre Berto in 2010, Quintana went on to fight only once in 2011, wherein he stopped Yoryi Estrella in the ninth round.

    Having to prove that he could still take on a significant threat at this stage in his career, Quintana signed to fight Latimore, who had lost only twice before to Ian Gardner and Cory Spinks.

    Both fighters needed a significant and reputable win and there was no place better to get it than in a Floyd Mayweather vs. Miguel Cotto undercard.

    In the scheduled 10-round standoff, Quintana showed his persistence in meeting Latimore shot for shot and broke down the younger fighter's defensive systems.

    In the sixth round, Quintana was relentless in pursuing and bombing the backpedaling Latimore with heavy hands that inserted themselves into each unblocked portion of Latimore's defense.

    His brutal conquest soon came to an end after connecting with a huge left hook to Latimore's temple, sending the young contender down and out for the count.

    The fight was as exciting as a decent undercard could get and the great thing was, the evening was just beginning.

Jessie Vargas' Complete Shutout of Stevie Forbes

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    People that are still saying that the sport of boxing is on its last legs clearly weren't able to see the undefeated 22-year-old Jessie Vargas go to work on 35-year-old veteran Stevie Forbes―who stepped in for Alfonso Gomez, who pulled out of the fight due to back spasms in the second official Ring Kings undercard.

    Vargas, the man they call "La Nueva Generacion" or "The New Generation" proved exactly why he deserved the moniker by winning almost every round in his faceoff with Forbes in a masterful manner that drew stunning similarities to the styles of Floyd Mayweather.

    Being a heralded natural brawler, Forbes looked to bring the fight to Vargas, unleashing combinations with bad intentions at a steady rate. The veteran was definitely the aggressor throughout the match, shoving and banging away with power shots.

    Vargas, however, wasn't visibly affected by any of Forbes' advances, simply using his prodigious defensive abilities to make the veteran miss and used his quicker hand speed to capitalize on multiple counter-punch opportunities.

    Forbes would prove stable enough to survive all 10 scheduled rounds, but would unanimously lose lopsidedly on the scorecards to the young up-and-comer.

    Vargas is currently signed to Mayweather Promotions, which the undefeated Mayweather has at many times proclaimed to be the "past, present and furture of sports and entertainment."

    We clearly saw that in Vargas on Cinco de Mayo night.

Shane Mosley's Surprising Effort Against Saul Canelo Alvarez

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    He may not have won and pulled off an upset worthy of the history books, but in his bout against the undefeated 21-year-old superstar Saul "Canelo" Alvarez, Shane Mosley showed the world what kind of heart he's got and why he is more than deserving of his first-ballot spot in the Boxing Hall of Fame.

    With most of the boxing community placing his chances at close to none to none at all, almost nobody expected to see the show that Mosley played out Saturday night.

    In what was supposed to be an easy victory over a wilting legend, Alvarez instead found himself in a battle until the final bell with a bloodied eye and a few rounds lost.

    From the start of the match, Alvarez looked like he was waiting for an opportunity to land one big shot that would put his older opponent on the floor. With 29 knockouts under his name and all of his past three fights ending in such a way, Alvarez had nothing to doubt about his punching power.

    After feeling out his opponent early on, Alvarez let go of several big shots that found their targets in more ways than one.

    Though the young champion continued his bombardment of punches all night long, he may very well have been surprised at just how much hits Mosley could not only receive, but also give in return.

    Despite big blows landing flush on Mosley's head that would have likely knocked any lesser man down, all Alvarez found himself able to do was cause a bit of puffiness on Sugar Shane's nose and cheeks.

    Mosley had never been knocked out in his entire career and he showed Canelo that he wasn't planning on starting so this late in the game.

    Mosley put on an explosive performance, coming forward and pushing the younger Alvarez back with excellently timed flurries and an unrelenting energy that has long been absent from his otherwise colorful career.

    As expected, Mosley couldn't do enough to secure the victory over a much faster, stronger and younger fighter in Alvarez, losing the fight by unanimous decision but winning over the adulation of many in the audience.

    Spectators were likely shocked by Mosley's laudable outing and probably went home thinking that had Mosley been in his prime, the outcome would have been entirely different.

Floyd Mayweather's Star-Studded Entourage

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    If Floyd Mayweather wanted to make his entrance and exit party a surprising cast of red carpet characters, he sure got what he was going for.

    Other than the obvious presence of his best friend and superstar rapper in Curtis Jackson (50 Cent), Mayweather made his way into the ring flanked by two unexpected celebrities in recording artist Justin Bieber and professional wrestler Paul Michael Levesque (Triple H).

    The appearance of Bieber was definitely the most largely discussed amongst the entirety of the entourage, drawing reactions from the commentators, the crowd and even those at home, as "50 Cent and Justin Bieber" became the worldwide top trending topic on Twitter.

    After the fight, the cast of stars joining The Money Team grew even larger, this time with undefeated featherweight superstar Yuriorkis Gamboa and another superstar rapper in Dwayne Michael Carter, Jr. (Lil' Wayne), getting in the mix to celebrate and congratulate Floyd.

    Celebrities spotted in attendance were also plenty, prompting an old saying from one of the members on the HBO broadcast panel, "People come to the fights to see and be seen."

Shantel Jackson vs. Melissa Cotto

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    It is well known around the sports world that both Floyd Mayweather and Miguel Cotto are attached to beautiful women.

    Cotto boasts his wife Melissa, who, despite a number of marital problems concerning Cotto's infidelitycausing the pair to split for a while back in 2007has remained by his side to present.

    Mayweather, on the other hand holds, bragging rights for his fiance, Shantel Jackson, more popularly known as Miss Jackson. Jackson is a model and aspiring actress, set to play a role in the upcoming movie, Freelancers.

    Both women had fair amounts of airtime on HBO's 24/7 series and made significant audience impacts throughout the process.

    Neither of the two are strangers to the series either, as they have both made past appearances in it, with Cotto appearing in the Cotto-Margarito 24/7 and Jackson making her debut in the Mayweather-Ortiz 24/7.

    The women also got multiple stints with the camera throughout the PPV broadcast proper, showing their reactions to the events going on around them.

    With women as beautiful and supportive as they are, both Mayweather and Cotto leave the ring as winners.

Floyd Mayweather's Incredible Adaptability

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    We all know that there is little argument against Floyd Mayweather when it comes to the best defensive styles in the sport.

    Many times in his perfect career, Mayweather has avoided almost everything that his opponents could throw at him and in the rare instances he got caught with anything, he recovered superbly quick and kept his game intact.

    Only a few fighters have ever gotten close to shaking Mayweather up or even putting him in a tough spot, but Miguel Cotto was certainly able to slip in a couple of his tricks Saturday night.

    Cotto tried to play Mayweather deep into the corners of the ring, looking to minimize possible evasive movements and increasing his opportunities at landing several good shots.

    Cotto has been extremely effective in attacking cornered opponents throughout his career and the mugging of most of those that have fallen to him recognize that staple.

    Mayweather, however, wasn't fazed by the increased attempts at him being cornered.

    Being the bigger man, Cotto was able to muscle Mayweather into the tight spots he wanted, but he wasn't able to do as much damage as he wanted.

    Mayweather was able to evade and block most of Cotto's punches and soon formulated a rhythm of escape and countering from the corner.

    Though Cotto had some decent rounds, Mayweather only got better as the fight went on and come the final round, he was able to quell any signs of further rallying from Cotto.

    Mayweather certainly did one of the best in-fight adaptive jobs in boxing history and all those watching and in attendance could certainly claim witness to it.

Miguel Cotto's Ability to Connect

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    Floyd Mayweather has taken punches before. It comes with the territory of his profession.

    But the thing that sets Mayweather apart from his colleagues is that he doesn't take punches as much as they do.

    Mayweather has been extraordinarily consistent at keeping his opponent's connecting percentages south of 30 percent.

    The typical scene at a Mayweather fight is you see one guy missing all his shots and another guy making him pay for each of those misses in return.

    The last time Mayweather got hit by a solid punch was in the second round of his 2010 bout against Shane Mosley, wherein Mayweather went on to win all the remaining rounds convincingly afterward.

    So when Miguel Cotto struck the undefeated champion with a couple straight shots here and there and got blood to come out of his nose, the surprised spectators were only either filled with two things: sudden happiness or sudden worry.

    People aren't used to seeing Mayweather get hit and that goes for even his greatest of detractors.

    The sheer excitement of the crowd's sudden frenzy and the unfamiliar sight happening in the ring was certainly extra incentive for all those who purchased Pay-Per-View that this fight was much more competitive than they originally thought it would be.

Floyd Mayweather's Unshakable Confidence

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    As stated in the previous slide, Miguel Cotto was able to get some good shots in on Floyd Mayweather.

    Cotto is a hard hitter and he can back up that fact with his 30 career knockouts.

    Cotto hit Mayweather hard enough with a stiff jab to make his nose bleed and the crowd erupt.

    Such a shift in energy would have shaken up most other fighters. The realization that they were just clocked flush with their opponent's best possible punch and to see and feel the sudden rush of blood from their heads through their nostrils would prove to be a round-changer, if not even a game-changer.

    But like he is outside the ring, Mayweather's confidence and self-belief―at a level so high that most people will never even come close to such a feeling about themselves―was also present inside the ring.

    Following Cotto's accurately landed shots, Mayweather slid his way out, recovered and shook his head at Cotto, implying that those flush shots didn't hurt a fighter like him.

    At times he would also flash a smile or two, to demonstrate his amusement at Cotto's aggressive efforts.

    Seeing a fighter so collected and controlled in such a serious situation is very rare in the sport of boxing and the best place to see one is at the Floyd Mayweather bout nearest you.

Miguel Cotto's Return to Top Form

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    After a highly controversial first defeat at the supposedly plastered hands of Antonio Margarito in 2008, Miguel Cotto's mentality and aura was said to have taken a dip.

    Cotto said on HBO's 24/7 series that the fight against Margarito did not leave him at peace afterward. Knowing that something may have been amiss with Margarito's gloves and the fact that his record would forever be tainted by it was something that did not keep his thoughts at bay.

    Though he followed up the loss with wins over Michael Jennings and Joshua Clottey, he tasted defeat once again at the hands of WBO Welterweight Champion Manny Pacquiao―at a catchweight―the following year.

    Though Cotto would fight on and take back-to-back technical knockout victories over Yuri Foreman and Ricardo Mayorga to win and defend the WBO Light Middlewight Title, his resurgence into his old self wouldn't be complete until he conquered his only real past demons in Margarito.

    Cotto went on to prove himself the winner by forcing a stoppage on Margarito in the 10th round of their bout, closing a haunting chapter in his story.

    A rejuvenated Cotto was set to face Mayweather, and despite having lost, Cotto had nothing to regret about his performance Saturday night.

    Cotto did everything he possibly could to win the fight and made minimal mistakes throughout the bout, he put on a top-class performance, but unfortunately for him, Mayweather was just that good.

Another One of Floyd Mayweather's Masterful Performances

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    43-0 isn't a feat one just picks up from the ground. It isn't a feat that any significant stroke of luck can accomplish either. 43-0 is a feat taken by one through hard work and dedication.

    Floyd Mayweather is a person that knows both.

    Well known for his unholy training hours, Mayweather finds comfort in the thought that while he's training, his opponent is most likely sleeping.

    This work ethic coupled with his immense talent put him in the position where he is today and gives him the ability to walk over opponents one after the other.

    Mayweather's style of fighting is one never before seen on any other fighter at such a high level of the game.

    The way he dismantled Miguel Cotto at Cotto's weight class without a catchweight definitely proves not only his top pound-for-pound stature but also his overall greatness as an athlete.

    Mayweather's fighting style still has not met its match and may never will, but whatever his future has in store for him, he can rest on the fact that he has become quite possibly the biggest icon the sport has ever had, alongside greats like Muhammad Ali and Sugar Ray Robinson, both of whom he claims to be better than.

    As much as his detractors would like to call him boring for his lack of knockout action, the facts are straight and simple: Mayweather's style is tried, tested and effective.

    Any true and analytical boxing enthusiast will tell you that his defensive wizardry which translates into offensive efficiency is one that most fighters can only hope to imitate.

    The signature style Mayweather implemented to defeat Cotto can be branded as classic Mayweather  and once he retires, the face of the entire sport will come to realize that, if it hasn't done so already.

Floyd Mayweather's Reconciliation with Larry Merchant

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    Floyd Mayweather and HBO commentator Larry Merchant go a long way back.

    Many times after his PPV victories, Mayweather would proceed for the customary interview with Merchant all smiles and in a celebratory mood.

    Merchant, however, has ever since had a penchant for asking Mayweather the tough and slightly irritating questions that anyone who just came out victorious from a 12-round fist fight would be irked to hear.

    Though Mayweather has always attempted to keep his cool by giving indirect answers in return and even once before already called Merchant out for his style of questioning, tensions reached a climax after Mayweather's knockout victory over Victor Ortiz back in September of 2011.

    With Merchant being visibly disappointed at Mayweather for knocking out Ortiz while he was unaware, Merchant began to berate Mayweather with questions that called into inquiry the manner in which he won.

    Mayweather snapped at Merchant, saying that the commentator never gave him a fair shake and that Merchant should go and interview Ortiz instead for his bias.

    Merchant also lost his cool and said that if he were 50 years younger he would hurt Mayweather.

    Their feud continued until even the lead into the bout with Miguel Cotto, with Mayweather saying on HBO's 24/7 that there was no way he was going to do an interview with Larry Merchant after the fight.

    People were surprised to see then that Mayweather and Merchant were standing next to each other for an interview following the bout, after the unanimous decision for Mayweather was announced.

    To avoid any further confusion, Merchant explained to the audience that Mayweather had approached him the day before the fight and apologized for losing his cool last September. He then said that he accepted Mayweather's apology and thanked Mayweather for the gesture before proceeding with the usual interview.

    It is always nice to see a happy ending to any story, but the question now is, with Mayweather likely fighting two or more times before he finally retires into the greats, will this verbal peace treaty between himself and Merchant last? Or will he soon find himself in another verbal bout after one of his future fights?

    We can only wait and see.

     

    For more sports talk, follow me on Twitter: @CarloHerrera

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