For the last several years boxing has been consumed by one mega fight that refuses to materialize. As desperate as boxing fans are to see the showdown between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao it seems as though no one can dictate what these two men do or don’t do to each other inside a boxing ring.
We can disappointedly move on and boxing will continue to function and eventually we will find another mega fight we can all cling to. That fight could very well be between lineal middleweight champion and Puerto Rican superstar Miguel Cotto against Mexican idol Saul “Canelo” Alvarez.
However, and we should be used to this kind of stuff, it seems like there are some road blocks preventing this fight from happening.
Over the last several weeks there have been some reports about the interest level Miguel Cotto actually has in fighting Canelo, presumably on May 2nd (Cinco de Mayo weekend).
Oscar De La Hoya tweeted over the weekend that Canelo has given in to all demands and has moved off of a 50/50 split, stating that the ball has been in Cotto’s court for six weeks. Then, rumors began surfacing that Mayweather Jr. is interested in fighting a rematch with Cotto, reportedly offering the Puerto Rican 40 million to make the fight.
These claims have since been debunked by Cotto’s advisor.
Still, it would be great if this fight seemed more certain, even if it isn’t finalized for a few weeks. The business of boxing won’t allow a fight to just be signed without any drama, but it would be a tremendous precedent to set for future mega fights if Cotto and Canelo would give some simple reassurance.
Thaboxingvoice.com’s Joe “Beeb” Habeeb spoke with Top Rank’s Bob Arum, who is handling Cotto’s interests in the negotiations, to try to get some clarity on the fight.
Arum is careful not to make any guarantees on Cotto-Canelo, especially at this point, but he believes strongly that things will be finalized soon one way or the other, and that a simple yes or no is upon us.
“I don’t know if it looks like a go, I’m optimistic that it’ll all be concluded and wrapped up,” Arum told Habeeb when asked if things were close to finalized. “That fight will happen, but I can’t say it’s a go or anything like that because it isn’t.”
Cotto has a reputation for being a diva and stories have come up in the past of him creating difficult, sometimes unnecessarily stressful negotiations. But it is unfair to put any pressure on Cotto because he is one of the few A-side fighters that has earned his status by making compelling fights as the B-side. If he wants to make Canelo sweat it out a bit then he is entitled, especially if he ends up fighting the fight anyway.
Arum is not willing to give any other assurances, but he is confident that the intentions are there and that all parties involved are so willing to make the fight a reality that he is unwilling to entertain any fallout measures.
“It’s silly to do backup plans when you’re working hard to make something happen and that’s what everybody is working hard to make happen – Cotto and Canelo. Even thinking about backup plans at this point doesn’t make any sense and it’s counterproductive. If the fight didn’t happen then that’s the time to make [other] plans.”