My prediction.

We all know I’m a big boxing fan and I’ve read quite a bit of commentary on Facebook regarding this. Due to a good upcoming fight, I have to put my one dollar (two cents)

This weekend will be Miguel Cotto (42 fights, 38 wins – 31 wins by KO, 4 losses) vs. Sergio Martinez (55 fights,  51 wins – 28 by KO,  2 losses, 2 draws). The fight will take place at a catch weight of 159 pounds.

Boxing is a bit more complicated than the comparison of wins and losses and stats. They do say, however, that a good big man beats a good little man so let’s look at the obvious first:

Record: Miguel Cotto (42 fights, 38 wins – 31 wins by KO, 4 losses) 73.8 % KO rate vs. Sergio Martinez (55 fights,  51 wins – 28 by KO,  2 losses, 2 draws) 73.8 % KO rate
Edge: Sergio Martinez
Note: The records are very deceptive in this case. One would think that Cotto has the advantage, but the reality is that although Cotto has had overall tougher fights, Cotto’s last fights were against Delvin Rodriguez, Austin Trout, Floyd Mayweather, and Antonio Margarito. Delvin doesn’t matter, Cotto struggled with Trout, Cotto was shut out by Mayweather and I can’t even remember the Margarito fight (it was in 2011). In his last 4 fights, Sergio Martinez fought undefeated Martin Murray, dismantled Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., stopped Matthew Macklin, and stopped undefeated Darren Barker (and that was AFTER he ended his KO streak).

sergio-martinez

Height: Miguel Cotto = 5’7″ Sergio Martinez = 5’10”
Edge: Sergio Martinez
Note: Martinez may be a small middleweight, but he still holds a significant height advantage here. That advantage will be nullified by the fact that Martinez likes to fight low and with his hands down, however.

Reach: Miguel Cotto = 67″ Sergio Martinez =  73″
Edge: Sergio Martinez
Note: This is huge. Sergio Martinez is a better boxer and he has a 6″ reach advantage. That’s not good.

Power:
Edge: Sergio Martinez
Note: Most people would argue that the hard-hitter here would be Cotto – and they would be wrong. Keep in mind that Cotto hasn’t had a KO since 2011 and that was at 154 against Ricardo Mayorga. The last KO Martinez had was against undefeated Darren Barker at the end of 2011. Thin is that Martinez has been KO’ing middle weights. Cotto has struggled to do that with lower weights. Cotto is a tough dude, but I think he falls short on power.

Defense:
Edge: Miguel Cotto
Note: Miguel Cotto is underrated in defense. That said, Martinez has a porous defense. Martinez regularly gets knocked down and has a habit of fighting with his hands down, leaving himself exposed. It’s a very bad habit, but it hasn’t been fully exploited yet, though it’s a matter of time.

Miguel_Cotto_002

Speed:
Edge: Even
Note: Despite Martinez having the terrible habit of fighting with his hands down, he has better hand speed than Cotto. Not enough to clown him with just speed, but enough to cause major problems.

Accuracy:
Edge: Cotto
Note: Although I think the real advantage is the volume punching of Martinez along with his stamina and power, there’s little doubt that Cotto’s tighter punches are more accurate.

Endurance:
Edge: Martinez
Note: The bottom line here is that I have seen Cotto fade and I have seen Martinez swing until the final bell. If this fight goes the distance, expect Martinez to never stop swinging and Cotto’s output dropping further and further.

Boxing IQ:
Edge: Martinez
Note: Sure, Cotto has seen more quality fighters in his career, but Martinez is something else. I know some people like to jump on the Golovkin train because they’re blind fans, but you can’t be the man without beating the man. Both Cotto and Martinez are smart fighters, but my personal choice is Martinez.

Heart:
Edge: Martinez
Note: Props to both being tough guys, but Cotto has quit in him. Martinez simply does not. He fights until the very end even in fights he’s well ahead in. Not even close.

How the fight goes:
I hate blind fans. I have a Puerto Rican co-worker who, wouldn’t you know it, thinks Cotto is just about the best thing in sports. He’s younger so he even made a comment about comparing him to Trinidad – that’s when I knew he had no idea what he was talking about.

I see Cotto starting early and focusing most of his energy into body attacks. Cotto will lose most of the early rounds due to the better boxing ability and hand speed of Martinez. As the fight continues I expect Cotto to win a few rounds. I also expect to see Cotto hit the ground sometime in the 8th – 10th round. Martinez wins a clear unanimous decision.

 

 

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