ROACH  EXPECTS  COTTO  TO  SUFFER  HATTON'S  FATE

[PHOTO AT LEFT - Miguel Cotto HOLLYWOOD]

LOS ANGELES, NOVEMBER 2, 2009 (STAR)  By Abac Cordero - When he opens his doors to the media at noon Tuesday, Miguel Cotto will face some serious questions about the coming fight, probably as serious as pronouncements that he’s going to be knocked out by Manny Pacquiao in the first round.

Pacquiao’s trainer, Freddie Roach, has been clamoring for an early stoppage on the night of Nov. 14, when the two great champions from different weight divisions collide in what should be the biggest fight of the year.

Just the other day, Roach spoke to Brad Cooney, and said that based on his studies, the WBO welterweight champion from Puerto Rico, dubbed as the younger, bigger and stronger boxer between the two, may suffer the same fate of Ricky Hatton. ( Related story on A-27)

Hatton, of course, is the British cyclone who was undefeated at junior welter until he got to face Pacquiao and got knocked out last May 2 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. It was the kind of knockout that should push a fighter into retirement.

“Cotto makes the same mistakes as Hatton does. We are going to destroy Cotto, he won’t be able to hit us,” said Roach.

What those mistakes are he never really mentioned, but it probably has got something to do with Cotto’s tendency to drop his right hand when he lunges at his opponent or goes for that trademark left hook to the face or the body.

That should leave him open for Pacquiao’s vicious left, the very same punch that brought Hatton down for good.

“Cotto makes mistakes, and he’s been hurt in the first round before. If Manny Pacquiao hurts him in the first round like others have, believe me, he will finish him,” added Roach.

Cotto will face questions surrounding Roach’s bold pronouncements when he holds a media workout at the Pound4Pound Gym in South La Cienega Blvd here in Los Angeles. He faces the media at noon then proceeds with his workout.

Cotto is expected to fly in from Las Vegas. He arrived in Sin City last Sunday after a few weeks in Tampa, Florida, and a few more in Puerto Rico.

Pacquiao holds his own media workout Wednesday at the Wild Card Gym. On Tuesday, he resumes with his sparring, and is expected to do 10 rounds after doing 12 hard rounds against Shawn Porter and company last Saturday.

He did 16 rounds, non-stop, with Roach on the mitts Monday.

On Wednesday, Pacquiao is on tap to make a live appearance in the Jimmy Kimmel along with Cotto. It will be the first live appearance for Pacquiao in a nationally-televised talk show in the United States.

Pacquiao is closer to perfection as he moved just 11 days to the fight. He now has 130 rounds of sparring in the book, and has shown tremendous improvement handling someone as big, as fast as Porter as Cotto is.

In sparring, Pacquiao has gone far in impressing Roach who, before the camp opened, said this should be the toughest fight ever for the 30-year-old pound-for-pound champion, and that he sees 12 hard rounds in the ring.

Now he’s saying it could be over in one.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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