photo courtesy Teddy Blackburn
I found one! I found someone picking Miguel Cotto to beat Floyd Mayweather. Paul Malignaggi, who just came back from the Ukraine holding the WBA welterweight crown which was being held by Vyacheslav Senchenko, told me he likes the Puerto Rican hitter to upset "Money."
Malignaggi, who gave Cotto more than he expected when they met at MSG in 2006, but exited the ring with a broken right orbital bone, said that the Saturday clash is basically a pick em fight, but he is leaning toward Cotto. Yes, it will be near impossible for Cotto to win a decision in Vegas, Floyd's turf. But the 31-year-old Brooklyn-bred boxer can see Cotto stopping Mayweather, late, maybe off a body shot.
"If Mayweather doesn't lose to Cotto, he doesn't lose," the new champ said. Cotto will make Mayweather rumble, he said, make him know he's been in a fight, and is a more difficult foe than Manny Pacquiao would be, or Victor Ortiz was, he said.
By the way, if you only checked out the last round of the Malignaggi-Senchenko fight on YouTube, you might have wondered if notorious "let em fight" ref Steve Smoger pulled the plug too quickly. Nope, Malignaggi said. "His body language was changing, going from trying to win to 'I don't want to be here.' I was not surprised by the stoppage. Right before the stoppage he looked at Smoger. His look said it all. I saw it. Steve will let you fight...if you want to fight."
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