Michael Marley reports that Bob Arum is looking at a November date for a showdown between his two most popular stars, Filipino sensation Manny Pacquiao and Puerto Rican superstar Miguel Cotto:
"Manny told me what to do," Arum said. "Manny told me, ‘Go ahead, make that fight.’ So it will go Nov. 14 at the MGM Grand here in Vegas."
What with Cotto’s badly cut left eyebrow area, I asked if that might cause a date delay.
"No because it’s not that bad. Miguel is delighted to get a fight against Manny, trust me. Miguel very much wants this fight. It will be a sensational fight the way they attack."
As far as the explosive, arena-shaking ovation more than 17,000 fans gave Pacquiao when Michael Buffer introduced him, Arum said the fighter was thrilled.
"Manny really enjoyed and like that," Arum said. "He was impressed by Cotto’s fan support and told me it reminded him of how the British fans stand with Ricky Hatton."
It's an interesting fight to say the least, and I'll go on record right now and say I think Pacquiao's just too good for Cotto. One thing Shane Mosley recently said is something I've been trying to say for a little bit now, because it's 100% true: People need to stop acting like Pacquiao is smaller than he is. He is a small welterweight to be sure, but he is all of a half-inch shorter than Cotto and has the exact same reach. Cotto essentially entered the sport at 140 pounds. Pacquiao was a big 112-pound fighter, and I think it's more amazing now that he won the flyweight championship than it is the fact that he's now the 140-pound champion.
I mean no disrespect to Pacquiao or his trainer Freddie Roach when I say this, but if they ask Cotto to cut below 147, they're playing a game and it doesn't show true guts. The men are the exact same size. Cotto had trouble making 140 and isn't a bigger welter.
I also mean no disrespect when I say this, because Freddie pretty much said the same thing: The reason they'd want Mosley to cut is because they don't want to fight Mosley at 147. I don't think Freddie finds that one to be a very good idea at all. Mosley is 5'9" with a 74" reach and doesn't have the trigger problems that Freddie scouted out in Oscar de la Hoya, who hadn't fought at 147 in years in addition to his far more obvious decline than anything Mosley is in right now. Shane would have a lot of physical advantages on Pacquiao, but Cotto fought and beat Mosley, too, so it is what it is.
To me, Cotto seems the better fight for Manny, probably a bigger payday given that Cotto has more fans than Mosley does, and easier to make with both men being under the Top Rank banner. It's no surprise, it doesn't bother me, and I hope it gets made.
For those that will cry foul and demand a Cotto-Clottey rematch (there will be a few), this is simple business: Arum and Cotto and everyone else make way, way more money from Cotto-Pacquiao than they do Cotto-Clottey II. I know that seems obvious to 99.8% of you, but that 0.2% will be vocal shortly, I'm sure.