Welterweight veteran and former two-weight world champion Paulie Malignaggi was asked by Figthype.com over this past week whom he believed WBC World middleweight champion Miguel Cotto would fight next.
Paulie and Cotto shared the ring in 2006 with Cotto winning on points after scoring a knockdown in the second round and apparently breaking Paulie’s jaw very early on. It was a testament to the New Yorker’s grit and bravery that the fight went the distance.
Since then Cotto has stayed near the top of the sport, mixing it with both Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao in losing efforts, trading beatings in his two bouts with Antonio Margarito, outpointing Shane Mosley, and most recently dethroning a somewhat diminished Sergio Martinez for the belt he currently holds.
In the decade, since they met in the ring Paulie feels Cotto has consistently produced entertaining performances, and on that basis we can rest assured his next opponent is almost inconsequential, as he will entertain us regardless.
“Cotto against anybody is always fun you know, Cotto’s never in a bad fight, so you always get your money’s worth watching Miguel Cotto. So whoever he decides to fight the fans will get their money’s worth.”
The intrigue as to who Cotto’s next opponent might be is fuelled by his recent signing to Roc Nation Sports, a division of Jay Z’s Roc Nation who(according to their website) ‘focuses on elevating athletes’s careers on a global scale both on and off the field.’ They have also recently signed super-middleweight Andre Ward in an attempt to gain a foothold in the sport, and this isn’t a bad way to go about it.
Upon the mention that Cotto signed a three-fight deal that will earn him $50,000,000, Paulie had nothing but supportive words for his former adversary.
“I hope so man, the more, the merrier he deserves it. I love when I hear about guys getting paid, especially guys that have put so much on the line for the fans and for the entertainment of the sport. I feel like fighters should always come first and get paid first, and if that’s the deal he got I’m happy for him.”
Too many successful fighters have been left broke and broken down by the sport they loved. To list just a few names here would do an injustice to the ones I have missed, but the stereotype of the punchy former boxer left with nothing but a name that used to be up in lights is one all too familiar even nowadays. More money for the fighters can never be a bad thing. They are the ones who diet, train, sacrifice, and ultimately get punched in the head. Paulie’s got it right.