Cotto vs Margarito II
Madison Square Garden
21,239 Screaming Nuyoricans
Miguel Cotto got a pestering gorilla off his back by stopping Antonio Margarito after the 9th round to retain his WBA (Super) light middleweight title. It was one of the better title fights of late with all the tension and drama that a boxing fan desires.
Cotto came in with a Manny Pacquaio style using quickness, combinations and punches thrown at angles that gave Margarito problems. Margarito stalked Cotto throughout the fight, but it was like watching a clumsy giant lumbering forward trying to catch a mighty mouse. He appeared slow and bothered.
It would be a closing of Margarito's right eye, the same one crushed by Pacquaio, that would cause alarmed doctors to stop the fight at the end of the 9th round. By then Cotto had won no less than seven rounds and still looked strong and focused. Margarito appeared to pick up his pace in round nine but was definitely taking some head snapping blows from both hands of Cotto. His eye would need 12 stitches afterward.
Of course the after fight interviews said as much about the fight as the compubox numbers. Margarito denied being whupped and felt he could have continued. Cotto showed love to all his Puerto Rican brethren in attendance before giving this account of what he was feeling for Margarito as he'd stared at his beaten victim after the fight:
Congratulations Miguel Cotto on your Middleweight Championship Title Defense!