Cotto vs. Margarito: 15 Interesting Storylines Heading into the Fight
Antonio Margarito has never been apologetic on all the controversies surrounding his career. He maintains his innocence when it comes to his hand wrapping incident.
His former trainer and father figure, Javier Capitello, was the culprit.
Capitello secretly inserted a plaster of Paris-like substance to his hardened knuckles without his knowledge. However, no one really bought this idea.
Even a disoriented fighter should know if there is something wrong or different on his hands.
Miguel Cotto strongly believes Margarito fought with loaded gloves in their 2008 fight. The blood bath ended with an 11th round TKO in favor of Margarito.
Going into their December 3 rematch, allow me to enumerate 15 interesting things you need to know about this matchup.
15. Super World Super Welterweight Championship
The fight between Cotto and Margarito is for the WBA Super World Super Welterweight championship.
The WBA honors champions who hold two or more championship belts in the same weight class. They call it the "Super Champion," which is what Miguel Cotto is holding now after retaining his belt against Ricardo Mayorga last March.
The WBA honors two champions for each division, labeled by "regular champion" and "super champion."
This is the new money-making scheme for the ABC belts. Two champions means two sanctioned fights for each division.
14. Antonio Margarito's Record After His First Bout with Miguel Cotto
Since their 2008 controversial bout, Antonio Margarito has a record of 1-2.
He lost to faster and more technical opponents (Manny Pacquiao and Shane Mosley) and won against a fighter who has the same name as his trainer.
13. Miguel Cotto Was Offered a Rematch with Manny Pacquiao
After Miguel Cotto won his fourth championship belt in three different divisions against Yuri Foreman, Bob Arum promised he would be the front-runner for a rematch against Manny Pacquiao.
It never happened—instead, it was offered to Antonio Margarito in Dallas for Pacquiao’s unprecedented eighth division title.
12. Margarito's Sparring Partners
Heading into the Pacquiao fight, Margarito has tapped four undefeated fighters to mimic Pacquiao. His main sparring partner was Karim Martinez, a light welterweight who, at that time, was only 3-0.
This included a win against a 0-1-0 fighter named Randolph Cole. No wonder Margarito was pummeled down in a gruesome 12-round beating against Manny.
11. Guaranteed Purse
Miguel Cotto will be receiving a guaranteed $5 million, plus a bigger percentage share on pay per view.
Margarito is only getting half of what Cotto is earning.
10. Rashad Holloway
Rashad Holloway is Manny Pacquiao’s mainstay sparring partner. He once sparred with Antonio Margarito and suffered a broken orbital bone while wearing head gear and heavy gloves.
Holloway openly accused Margarito of using loaded gloves as shown in the link provided. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lduFFJj2P6I
With a twist of fate, Margarito suffered the same injury when he fought Manny Pacquiao, which may have jeopardized his already tainted career.
9. Madison Square Garden
This will be Miguel Cotto’s sixth fight in Madison Square Garden but only Margarito’s second fight in the famed arena.
8. The NYSAC Controversy
The New York State Athletic Commission, or NYSAC, denied Margarito a boxing license on October 31 due to the damage on his eye suffered in the Pacquiao fight.
Margarito’s camp appealed and was given a license with barely a week to spare before the fight.
7. In Their First Encounter
In their first fight, Miguel Cotto was leading on almost all the judges’ scorecards before he was caught with two uppercuts from Margarito in the seventh round.
After the fight ended, two judges scored two rounds for Margarito while the other scored it even.
6. Miguel Cotto's Record After Their Initial Bout
Since losing to Margarito in 2008, Cotto has been the busier fighter. He is 4-1 since then, his only loss coming to Manny Pacquiao.
He scored TKO wins over Ricardo Mayorga, Yuri Foreman and Michael Jennings and picked up a split decision over Joshua Clottey.
5. Broken Orbital Bone
With all the talks on Margarito's broken orbital bone, it's interesting to note Miguel Cotto has his own history of inflicting that very injury.
The fight was held in Madison Square Garden against the then-undefeated Paulie Malignaggi in June 2006. Cotto won the fight with a unanimous decision and Malignaggi suffered a fractured right orbital bone.
4. Antonio Margarito vs. Miguel Cotto II Tickets
The Antonio Margarito-Miguel Cotto II fight tickets were sold out with less than two weeks before the fight.
3. HBO 24/7 Episodes
There are only two episodes for Margarito-Cotto II available on HBO 24/7.
2. Hand Wrap Controversy
During HBO’s "Face-off" with Max Kellerman, Cotto showed off pictures of Margarito’s hand wraps after their initial fight.
Antonio’s left hand wrap has a hole, and you can directly see Margarito’s knuckles.
It brings memories of the Billy Collins-Luis Resto fight that ended the career of the 22-year-old Collins, who sustained injuries due to plaster of Paris peppered with under-padded gloves.
Ironically, the fight was held also in Madison Square Garden in 1983.
1. Antonio Margarito's Last Words to Miguel Cotto
During their HBO 24/7 Episode 2, Antonio Margarito had vulgar words for Cotto, which should only fuel the fire before they step in the ring.