Freddie Roach is not a stranger to seeing evidence of punishment absorbed when in the privacy of the water closet.
Red tinged urine, a sign that the other guy had some luck to the body.
A professional from 1978-1986, the Massachusetts-born hitter compiled a 40-13 mark, and was one not afraid to take two in order to get an angle to his liking, so he could launch.
But it's been awhile since he's peed blood from body shots. The last time...it's hard to recall.
But Miguel Cotto, the Puerto Rican fight icon who makes his middleweight debut on June 7 against Sergio Martinez, in NYC, has been basting Roach so hard to the body during workouts, that even though Roach wears a torso guard, his kidneys have been accumulating blood the morning after, he informed me in a Friday phoner.
"Miguel has been unbelievable to the body," Roach said. "I've been peeing blood."
They did eight rounds on the mitts Friday, and planned on sparring ten rounds today at Wild Card, the trainer reported. Sparring partners giving different looks, a speed guy, a strength guy, etc, and that includes ex titlist Kassim Ouma, have been gloving up against the 33-year-old hitter. "He's sparred ten rounds twice. He's in tremendous shape now."
Cotto is up for a 5 AM workout, getting his wind into fighting form, and then does a boxing workout at 1 PM. "I think he's in the best shape he's ever been," said Roach, who is the latest in a lengthy string of tutors for Miguel. The left hook will be a key against the southpaw slickster Martinez, Roach said, though it will take some smart trap-setting, perhaps, to get proper openings for it. Roach said he expects Martinez' body to show no ill effects from the spate of surgeries to the arms and legs the last couple of years, and wants Cotto to bang the 39-year-old with abandon.
"Miguel's power and strength will be better here. He's 161 now. He has me peeing blood. Manny Pacquiao, he has tremendous speed, but not this sort of power," Roach said when I asked who else has had him expelling pink pee. "Controlling the ring will be the key to the fight."
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