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Arum Talks About Cotto Vs. Canelo, Golovkin, Mayweather and Pacquiao

BY Michael Woods ON June 09, 2014
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I wasn't being flippant when I said in this video (at the 2:12 mark) that Bob Arum looked only about 70 early Sunday morning, while exulting in Miguel Cottos' win over WBC middleweight champion Sergio Martinez. For real, the Vegas-based dealmaker was supremely energized as he discussed Cotto's effort, which went beyond what about 98% of "experts" predicted.

Arum compared Cotto, at 33, to late-inning Roberto Duran. Hands of Stone was washed up in the minds of the smarts when he lost to Jamaican Brit Kirkland Laing, via split decision, one fight after losing via UD15 to Wilfred Benitez. Duran was 31 then, with all questioning his ability to keep up his desire level necessary to slog through the two month-long camps, and to steer clear of the fridge and bars enough to stay in reasonable shape in between fights.

"Duran then came to us, and from nowhere, he resurrected his life and his career," said Arum of the Panamanian who made most dissers believers when he took Davey Moores' junior middle crown at Madison Square Garden. The promoter said that the analogy differs because Duran dipped because of self destructive tendencies, while Cotto looked so stellar, in Arums' eyes, because he found a stellar tutor in Freddie Roach.

You will recall Cotto hooked on with Emanuel Steward, and one might think that sort of teacher would be of high enough caliber to get the best from the Caguas kid. Yes and no, said Arum; Steward was great when he concentrated, but when he was pulled in too many directions, he wasn't as effective. Roach, he said, is all in, lives for the gym and the instruction. "Freddie, you gotta give him credit, stays in that effin gym, the Wild Card, doesn't leave, doesn't do anything, stays in the Wild Card," Arum said.

So, we pondered the win for a good two minutes before ask, What's next for Cotto? Canelo is the first name Arum mentioned, and then he mentioned Timothy Bradley. "I'd love to see him in with a good boxer," Arum said. Maybe at 154 1/2, so the middleweight crown could be up for grabs. (Can we call a halt to these under the weight catchweight fights for crowns NOW...the old school guys must laugh at this from their coffins....) "And down the line, Golovkin could be a possibility. The world is open now." He called Golovkin a "smaller middleweight," and said he doesn't want to see Cotto face off against an XL middleweight.

No worries about putting in Cotto with such a banger as Triple G, really?

Not at all, Arum said. "I think for me this kid showed himself to be a major throwback to how they used to fight. The great ones, Hagler, Leonard, that's how they used to fight, brilliantly…skillfully, not stupid."

Yes, Arum admitted Cotto surpassed his expectations. "Maybe Martinez isn't the Martinez he was a few years ago, but his legs held up, and Martinez couldn't do s--t with Cotto," he said.

Arum joked that he didn't want anyone asking him about Cotto-Pacquiao II, because "I don't want anything to get back to the Phillippines," implying that this version of Cotto looked so stellar, there would be hell to pay for Pacman if they did a sequel. "But if Cotto with Freddie Roach fought Mayweather again, it'd be a no contest, Mayweather wouldn't have an effin chance! Manny? I ain't going there! I don't need the Filipino writers keeping me from going to sleep!"

Arum, on a roll, joked that he'd need someone with an AK to hold it to Floyd to force him to make a Floyd-Cotto bout. "Floyd's afraid to fight Manny, you think he'd fight Cotto?" the promoter said.

"You call (Floyd up), you make it, I'll pay you a commission," Arum cracked to writer Tim Smith. "Ten percent."

Readers, talk to me….Is Cotto akin to Duran? What does a Cotto-Golovkin fight look like? What do you think a Cotto 2014 vs. Mayweather bout would look like? And this Cotto against Manny re-do, what happens in that one? Weigh in, in our Forum!

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Comment on this article

Skibbz says:

I must admit it would be an incredible achievement by Floyd if he became a champion at 160lb too. He would be very close to cementing his claim as TBE, if not in the eyes of the older generation of fans but certainly in the eyes of the new kids on the block who are taking a keen interest in the sport.

I wouldn't mind seeing that fight either. I would prefer Cotto Canelo, to give Canelo a belt to be defending if he wins and I think it would be a much more entertaining spectacle. I think if Canelo got a fight with Floyd with his 160 belt then he could do it this time...

Cotto Marquez?? That's a ridiculous match up if i'm being honest. Cotto Canelo - Winner faces Floyd in May for the 160 belt.

Skibbz says:

Think about it, Canelo demolishes Angulo, beats or KO's Lara and then goes on to win a 160lb belt against Cotto. 2014 will have been very sweet for the Cinnamon Kid, and a rematch with Floyd will be even sweeter.

oubobcat says:

Interesting analogy to Roberto Duran's career...Cotto has resurrected his career in a similar manner that Duran once did. Only time will tell how much more success Cotto will have.

Initially I thought Cotto-Canelo was going to happen in December. It still might. But listening to the Commish's interview on the radio show with Bob Arum yesterday, it seemed to me that Arum prefer the fight happen next year and Cotto take a bout in the interim at Madison Square Garden in December.

So thinking about it, here is a name I have come up with for the Garden in December. Matthew Macklin. Macklin is popular and has a style that is well suited for Cotto to look good against. Its not an easy fight but its a fight that Cotto would be a substantial favorite, can make very good money and serve as a springboard to a big PPV in the spring of 2015 against Canelo.

The_King_AJ says:

I must admit it would be an incredible achievement by Floyd if he became a champion at 160lb too. He would be very close to cementing his claim as TBE, if not in the eyes of the older generation of fans but certainly in the eyes of the new kids on the block who are taking a keen interest in the sport.

I wouldn't mind seeing that fight either. I would prefer Cotto Canelo, to give Canelo a belt to be defending if he wins and I think it would be a much more entertaining spectacle. I think if Canelo got a fight with Floyd with his 160 belt then he could do it this time...

Cotto Marquez?? That's a ridiculous match up if i'm being honest. Cotto Canelo - Winner faces Floyd in May for the 160 belt.


This. Cotto looks better now than he did against Mayweather earlier. Mayweather has the opportunity of beating the lineal 160lb champion and have domination over welterweight, light middleweight, and middleweight all at the same time.
Cotto vs Canelo winner is the best option and a $ making option.

Although it's clear Mayweather will not fight Golovkin.

In the meantime, September will probably be a Maidana rematch.

Skibbz says:

This. Cotto looks better now than he did against Mayweather earlier. Mayweather has the opportunity of beating the lineal 160lb champion and have domination over welterweight, light middleweight, and middleweight all at the same time.
Cotto vs Canelo winner is the best option and a $ making option.

Although it's clear Mayweather will not fight Golovkin.

In the meantime, September will probably be a Maidana rematch.


I'm holding my judgement on Cotto's improvements until I see him thoroughly tested by a real contendor/champion. We'll see who he faces next, and how he fairs.

Mayweather made him look poor, Trout didn't give him an inch and I don't doubt that when another guy with credentials and in good shape comes along they will do it too. Cotto has no business north of 147 in my opinion, now he's got a title at 160... What a crazy sport... If you're not tough enough to hold onto what you've got someone will come and rip it from you.


September, Maidana rematch? Why would you say this? It's the last thing anyone wants to hear surely. Fair enough the fight was the most exciting Mayweather fight out of his last 3 but I wouldn't pay to watch Floyd give the man no chance.

Floyd's got his meter stick and measured Maidana, he'll let him work off his steam and then get back to dominating the crude Argentine till the finish..

amayseng says:

[QUOTE=Skibbz;55130]I must admit it would be an incredible achievement by Floyd if he became a champion at 160lb too. He would be very close to cementing his claim as TBE, if not in the eyes of the older generation of fans but certainly in the eyes of the new kids on the block who are taking a keen interest in the sport.

I wouldn't mind seeing that fight either. I would prefer Cotto Canelo, to give Canelo a belt to be defending if he wins and I think it would be a much more entertaining spectacle. I think if Canelo got a fight with Floyd with his 160 belt then he could do it this time...

Cotto Marquez?? That's a ridiculous match up if i'm being honest. Cotto Canelo - Winner faces Floyd in May for the 160 belt.

I do not understand this. How so? Floyd beat Cotto at 154, now if he beats him at 155 (which he just weighed in at) then all of a sudden Floyd is TBE????

Floyd is not even a top 15 of all time.

Cotto looked good but he beat a shot fighter with injuries at near 40 years old.

A lot of fans are getting googly eyed

thegreyman says:

I do not understand this. How so? Floyd beat Cotto at 154, now if he beats him at 155 (which he just weighed in at) then all of a sudden Floyd is TBE????

Floyd is not even a top 15 of all time.

Cotto looked good but he beat a shot fighter with injuries at near 40 years old.

A lot of fans are getting googly eyed


I think he just meant that if Floyd wins a title at 160, against any champion, the it'll look very good for his legacy inevitably in the eyes of many of the fans too, which is true.

I think Cotto Canelo is a much more appetising bout anyway. I don't see why Mayweather's name has to be dragged into every discussion of fighter virtually between 140-160. He's just one man.

Skibbz says:

I do not understand this. How so? Floyd beat Cotto at 154, now if he beats him at 155 (which he just weighed in at) then all of a sudden Floyd is TBE????

Floyd is not even a top 15 of all time.

Cotto looked good but he beat a shot fighter with injuries at near 40 years old.

A lot of fans are getting googly eyed


On paper how would his achievements look to you should he win a title at 160lb? Now again put yourself in the shoes of a 13-18 year old fight fan or amateur boxer who hears mostly the praises of Floyd Money Mayweather on the waves, on the internet and in the papers, again how would you see Floyd's achievements?

I for one have never said he was close to TBE, I have just said in the eyes of the new kids on the block he would almost certainly seem it. You must understand that not everyone can name more than 20 world champions, let alone 20 in one division.

Googly eyed for what? There's no shame in admiring the achievements of someone who worked hard, paid his dues and dominates his area of competition whatever it may be.

A lot of fans also try to make small the achievements of others it seems.

amayseng says:

True fans of the sport know there's more than just what is on paper. Who , when and where matters along with other variables.

Also a fan 13-18 has little when it comes to credibility. How can they have the knowledge so young to scale back to the sports beginning?

I'm 35 and I still am far off from considering myself knowledgeable when it comes to the history and placement of all time greats in this 100+ year old sport.

No disrespect to you.
But that is where my googly eyes comment comes in. Youngins are romanticized by one fight without weighing the circumstances.

Floyd is a phenomenal fighter but his run at WW is average.

The mention of him as TBE is an insult to the true top fighters all time


It's unsettling when it is used defining him.

The Shadow says:

On paper how would his achievements look to you should he win a title at 160lb? Now again put yourself in the shoes of a 13-18 year old fight fan or amateur boxer who hears mostly the praises of Floyd Money Mayweather on the waves, on the internet and in the papers, again how would you see Floyd's achievements?

I for one have never said he was close to TBE, I have just said in the eyes of the new kids on the block he would almost certainly seem it. You must understand that not everyone can name more than 20 world champions, let alone 20 in one division.

Googly eyed for what? There's no shame in admiring the achievements of someone who worked hard, paid his dues and dominates his area of competition whatever it may be.

A lot of fans also try to make small the achievements of others it seems.


I agree. You can scrutinize, break down and minimize the accomplishments of any fighter in history.

No matter how it's done, if you can capture legitimate CHAMPIONSHIPS in FIVE weight classes -- a record -- while also holding unified titles in (WBC/WBA/Ring x2 + WBC/Ring) in three weight classes at once, you've made your mark in history.

In fact, the only guy who's held championships in three weight classes simultaneously was Henry Armstrong -- and he's widely considered the 2nd best in history, based on this feat.

It's one thing doing a phony 150-pound catch weight for a vacant title in a weight class in which neither man had competed, which was essentially a gift.

Or being given a super middleweight championship in a fight for a light heavyweight belt doesn't qualify as being the legitimate, undisputed champion either in either weight class.

Thant doesn't seem to hurt their legacy one bit.

But beating the main guy -- the champ -- at that weight class in FIVE weight classes is unprecedented. Pacquiao held the record with four, which Floyd has since tied. But five?! That's insane.

For context, Miguel Cotto just now captured his FIRST.

Objectively speaking, his accomplishments are incredible. So I don't think there's anything wrong with what you're saying, Skibbz.

And should he capture the legitimate middleweight championship -- and it doesn't matter what the champion weighs in at, Mayweather comes in way below the 154 limit each time he fights there -- then his accomplishments and records are Top 5 all time, in my opinion. Easily.

The Shadow says:

True fans of the sport know there's more than just what is on paper. Who , when and where matters along with other variables.

Also a fan 13-18 has little when it comes to credibility. How can they have the knowledge so young to scale back to the sports beginning?

I'm 35 and I still am far off from considering myself knowledgeable when it comes to the history and placement of all time greats in this 100+ year old sport.

No disrespect to you.
But that is where my googly eyes comment comes in. Youngins are romanticized by one fight without weighing the circumstances.

Floyd is a phenomenal fighter but his run at WW is average.

The mention of him as TBE is an insult to the true top fighters all time


It's unsettling when it is used defining him.


I hear what you're saying but winning five lineal championships, should he do so, is something no other man has done. Cotto just now won his first. You can't cherry pick your way to that. It's impossible.

Also, he's not really a welterweight. If you lookat his record, the only weight class he has fought in with any regular consistency is 130. Other than that, he's jumped back and forth. He really made his bones in the lower classes challenging and defeating anyone that would face him.

Lots of people (not you) seem to think that he's always been this welterweight cash cow who could pick and choose his opponents and they name drop the welterweights on the mid-2000s (totally disregarding that Floyd was campaigning at super featherweight and lightweight at the time).

That's not the case at all. Him becoming a cash cow didn't happen till 2009 (he was booked in 2007 on big PPV assignments). Before that, he was like the Rigondeaux of his day; none of the money guys wanted no part of him at all. None of them. High-risk, low-reward, they all said. And his promoter didn't know how to market him.

Nowadays he gets called out from lightweight (Gamboa) to light heavyweight (Hopkins) and everything in between (Martinez, Ward and other) with the odd former heavyweight titlist thrown in there for good measure (Jones Jr.).

Skibbz says:

I hear what you're saying but winning five lineal championships, should he do so, is something no other man has done. Cotto just now won his first. You can't cherry pick your way to that. It's impossible.

Also, he's not really a welterweight. If you lookat his record, the only weight class he has fought in with any regular consistency is 130. Other than that, he's jumped back and forth. He really made his bones in the lower classes challenging and defeating anyone that would face him.

Lots of people (not you) seem to think that he's always been this welterweight cash cow who could pick and choose his opponents and they name drop the welterweights on the mid-2000s (totally disregarding that Floyd was campaigning at super featherweight and lightweight at the time).

That's not the case at all. Him becoming a cash cow didn't happen till 2009 (he was booked in 2007 on big PPV assignments). Before that, he was like the Rigondeaux of his day; none of the money guys wanted no part of him at all. None of them. High-risk, low-reward, they all said. And his promoter didn't know how to market him.

Nowadays he gets called out from lightweight (Gamboa) to light heavyweight (Hopkins) and everything in between (Martinez, Ward and other) with the odd former heavyweight titlist thrown in there for good measure (Jones Jr.).


Too true Shadow.

@Amayseng Those young romanticized youths will be the ones who go on to write boxing's history when we're not around. They'll grow up and instead of Ali or Frazier, Duran or Leonard to idolize they have Floyd Mayweather, who's undefeated, hasn't been knocked down and makes prize fighting look easy.

What makes Floyd a real great whether people accept it in this era or the next is that he has beaten guys who outweigh him considerably, and they're not just anybodies. They're world champions in their own right. All throughout boxing's history people have taken titles any which way they could because once that belt is around your waist that's all that matters. Not that it was at 155 or 160 that you fought for it.

The small things get forgotten but the accomplishment will live on for future generations to aspire to achieve.

amayseng says:

Too true Shadow.

@Amayseng Those young romanticized youths will be the ones who go on to write boxing's history when we're not around. They'll grow up and instead of Ali or Frazier, Duran or Leonard to idolize they have Floyd Mayweather, who's undefeated, hasn't been knocked down and makes prize fighting look easy.

What makes Floyd a real great whether people accept it in this era or the next is that he has beaten guys who outweigh him considerably, and they're not just anybodies. They're world champions in their own right. All throughout boxing's history people have taken titles any which way they could because once that belt is around your waist that's all that matters. Not that it was at 155 or 160 that you fought for it.

The small things get forgotten but the accomplishment will live on for future generations to aspire to achieve.


I understand your point. Almost like today where young kids say Lebron is the greatest ever when they didnt see Jordan and his competition --Bird, Magic, Robinson, Malone, Isiah Thomas, Reggie Miller, Allen Iverson, Kobe among many many others.....


However, if these will be the writers, journalists or new historians I expect responsible judgement, just like we had/have today with like Bert Sugar, Al Bernstein, Lampley and the such, guys who know who the true top fighters of all time are and know Floyd ain't in that mix.

brownsugar says:

I hear what you're saying but winning five lineal championships, should he do so, is something no other man has done. Cotto just now won his first. You can't cherry pick your way to that. It's impossible.

Also, he's not really a welterweight. If you lookat his record, the only weight class he has fought in with any regular consistency is 130. Other than that, he's jumped back and forth. He really made his bones in the lower classes challenging and defeating anyone that would face him.

Lots of people (not you) seem to think that he's always been this welterweight cash cow who could pick and choose his opponents. That's not the case at all. Then they name drop the welterweights of the mid-2000s, totally disregarding that 1) Floyd was campaigning at super featherweight and lightweight at the time and 2) they didn't want to fight him anyway.

Him becoming a cash cow didn't happen till 2009 (he was booked in 2007 on big PPV assignments). Before that, he was like the Rigondeaux of his day; none of the money guys wanted no part of him at all. None of them. High-risk, low-reward, they all said. And his promoter didn't know how to market him.

Nowadays he gets called out from lightweight (Gamboa) to light heavyweight (Hopkins) and everything in between (Martinez, Ward and other) with the odd former heavyweight titlist thrown in there for good measure (Jones Jr.).

And this is not even my opinion, this is just the truth. Like this one trainer said, "he's not as good as he thinks he is but he's better than we give him credit for."


You just don't cherry pick your way to 5 lineal championships...superbly stated Shadow.
I remember when Floyd routinely called out DLH, Mosley, Cassamayor, Tzyu, ....all the heavy hitters, Mosley had an 85% KO record....Oscar was beating a bloody path through the junior welterweight division... Kostya was untouchable and the Cuban.... Cassamayor was finessing his way through all comers.. Floyd was still a junior light weight and couldnt get a fight with a Jr welter.

And yet he gets called a coward. ....As consolation he was told " Be patient son your time will come " ......that was as close as he got to getting a marquee name.... What an amazing journey.

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