After Debris Settles and the Dust is Swept Off

Luis TorresContributor IJune 12, 2009

LAS VEGAS - JULY 26:  Miguel Cotto gets an eight-count after being knocked down by Antonio Margarito during their WBA welterweight title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena July 26, 2008 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Margarito won by TKO in the 11th round.  (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Will Miguel Cotto pick up right where he left off?

No, it's not a song by Kanye West. It's a question fight fans should be asking themselves before Saturday's bout between Welterweights Miguel Cotto and Joshua Clottey at Madison Square Garden in New York.

Since Miguel Cotto's brutal loss to Antonio Margarito on July 26th, 2008; he has only made one ring appearance (or at least a public sparring session)—against British fighter Michael Jennings last February, a completely one sided fifth round TKO.

Now, when Cotto steps into the ring on Saturday, June 13th, will he be the same Cotto that breezed through the top Junior Welterweight and Welterweight fighters earlier in his career?

The 28-year-old fighter now faces one of the hardest tests of his career.

Last July, before he faced the now disgraced fighter, Antonio Margarito, it seemed like he could do no wrong. He came off wins to guys like Paulie Malignaggi, Carlos Quintana, Zab Judah and Shane Mosley.

But Margarito had other plans.

He brutalized Cotto and forced him to his knees in an electrifying 11th round TKO that had everyone gasping in disbelief. That is the kind of loss that takes something out of a fighter.

Miguel Cotto then faced Michael Jennings in February, recording the TKO win many expected, but leaving a bit to be desired as he faced a lower caliber fighter.

So the question remained, is Cotto really back?

Joshua Clottey is a tough fighter. It can be argued that he has faced, more or less, the same kind of competition that Cotto has. He also comes from a loss to Margarito in 2006 which many, including Clottey, believe he won.

This is the kind of matchup Cotto needs right now if he is to prove that he is still the top welterweight in the division, and come Saturday, June 13 I'm sure that question will be answered.