Even though it once seemed like the fight was a done deal, negotiations for the middleweight showdown between champion Sergio Martinez and Miguel Cotto have yet to yield a final contract for the fight. The most common report is that Cotto is demanding quite a bit, both in terms of money and making Martinez come down in weight a few pounds.
Naturally, this has all angered Martinez and he has responded with some rather unkind words for the Puerto Rican star. Here is what Martinez had to say, via Elisinio Castillo of notifight.com:
"He should never forget that I'm the champion. He has a lot of demands but I'm the champion. I'll say it, I don't think that he'll last five rounds. I would like to fight Cotto, but he is showing signs that he doesn't want to (fight), by asking for complicated conditions and he does not respect boxing history. I'm ready to knock Cotto out in five or six rounds and I know I will. He can not resist me. Disrespecting me is a very unfortunate thing. He should not forget that I'm the champion," Martinez said.
I don't think that Cotto is forgetting that Martinez is the champion, but Cotto is also the draw here, especially if the fight is going to take place in Madison Square Garden on the Puerto Rican Day Parade weekend.
Some of Martinez's statements in the past about coming down in weight for potential superfights (namely against Floyd Mayweather or Manny Pacquiao) may be coming back to bite him a little now. Over the last few years he openly stated his desire to drop in weight for the right fight, even going so far as to claim that he would go down to 150. Now, with his body a bit older and not being a very active fighter (he had one contest in 2013), dropping weight may be more difficult for the aging middleweight champion.
A few weeks ago this fight appeared to be all but signed. Now, who knows? Martinez doesn't have many options in terms of big money fights. A Chavez rematch seems out the window at the moment and Gennady Golovkin is not a pay-per-view guy. Cotto, on the other hand, has the luxury of waiting it out. Because of his smaller size, he can get fights from either 154 or 160, and maybe even get some welterweights to move up and fight him. I still would not rule out a Floyd Mayweather rematch at some point if Golden Boy throws a ton of money at him and boxing politics dwindles Mayweather's potential opponent list way down. And let's not forget he could always just fight Canelo Alvarez this summer or fall.