Miguel Cotto took his 37-2 record (with 30 KOs) into his match with Floyd Mayweather Jr. on Saturday night and left the MGM Grand with a 37-3 record.
Cotto lost to Mayweather in what was a unanimous decision but did earn the respect of his opponent. There are plenty of reasons why Cotto can distance himself from the Mayweather fight with pride.
Cotto Was Worthy
If there was one big takeaway from the fight on Saturday, it was that the fight wasn't as lopsided as some had forecast. Cotto certainly didn't embarrass himself.
He was never knocked down and was appropriately aggressive. Cotto may have fought this match not to lose, and that is what showed. Cotto took some wicked shots for his efforts on Saturday, but he never flinched nor backed down against his superior opponent. When Mayweather's nose started bleeding, Cotto had treated Mayweather-haters to some rare footage.
After the fight, Mayweather took to the stand and said, “Normally I come up on this podium with no bumps, no bruises. Tonight I got a few bumps and bruises. This was a grueling fight.”
Cotto Can Absorb Serious Punishment
After each round, HBO PPV treated viewers to repeated slow-motion shots of Cotto's face rearranging itself, and Cotto rebounded each time with resiliency. Outside of a 12th-Round barrage from Mayweather, Cotto never looked flustered or dazed—even when absorbing some heavy body shots in the earlier rounds.
The Score Wasn't Indicative of the Fight
Cotto's biggest flaw on Saturday was his inability to capitalize on those moments when he had Mayweather against the ropes.
There were plenty of times when Mayweather was caught against the ropes and—due to Cotto's size—was unable to escape. But Mayweather was just too talented.
He was able to fight his way back to the middle of the ring and take control of the fight. If Cotto had been able to take advantage of any of those situations, the result could have been different. One judge scored it 118-110, and two scored it 117-111, but Cotto was competitive and aggressive in every round. Understandably, Cotto was frustrated with the judges' scoring, and he refused to speak after he fight.