This weekend’s HBO PPV main event between lineal middleweight champion of the world Sergio Martinez and Puerto Rican superstar Miguel Cotto boils down to one thing for me: is Martinez healthy?
To me, that is the only question that matters in the fight. Cotto is a talented fighter and one of the best Puerto Rican fighters of this generation, but he is vastly overmatched in both the size and speed departments. If this fight were to have taken place a year ago I would have completely doubted the competitive legitimacy of the matchup.
However, I don’t believe Cotto is so overmatched that a less than healthy version of Martinez simply walks through him. In fact, anything less than an 85% ready Martinez makes the fight highly competitive and the refined form Cotto displayed against Delvin Rodriguez is capable enough to pull off the mild upset.
Austin Trout shares my sentiments and he told Thaboxngvoice.com just that when he was a guest on our airwaves two weeks ago.
“It depends on what Martinez shows up, we don’t know if he’s still injured and if the injuries will play a part,” Trout said
Trout also expressed a concern for Martinez’s age, presumably a reference to Martinez’s last outing against Martin Murray.
“I think he’s starting to age and get old and if he does I think Cotto is going to eke out a surprise and win that fight,” Trout said
You have to give Freddie Roach credit in all of this because Cotto’s last performance against Rodriguez left the kind of impression that makes this fight with Martinez much more compelling. Cotto began working with Roach during his last camp leading up to the Rodriguez victory.
Trout recognizes the impact Roach has had on Cotto and believes the pair is properly prepared for fight night.
“Under Freddie Roach [Cotto] is looking good and he’s back to his body punching days and his left-hook ways and I think that’ll be a problem for Martinez.”
Trout concluded the discussion of Cotto-Martinez by saying, “Martinez has good hand speed but if his ankles hurt and his knees are hurt then he’s not going to be able to move and you’re going to have to move against Cotto.”