FLOYD MAYWEATHER DETHRONES COTTO FOR WBA TITLE / PACQUIAO IS NEXT?

[PHOTO - Miguel Cotto connects with a right to the face of Floyd Mayweather Jr. during their WBA super welterweight title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday. AFP PHOTO]

LAS VEGASA, MAY 8, 2012 (MANILA TIMES) Written by : AFP  - Undefeated Floyd Mayweather won the World Boxing Association (WBA) super welterweight title with a unanimous points decision over Miguel Cotto on Saturday (Sunday in Manila) at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

The American, who stepped up in weight to fight Cotto, used his superior hand speed and solid defense to take the fight on all three judges’ scorecards after 12 rounds, in what will go down as one of his toughest fights.

“You got to suck it up and fight hard,” Mayweather said. “Miguel Cotto was a tough competitor. I had to execute the game plan and fight my heart out.”

Cotto, of Puerto Rico, made Mayweather work for the victory as he clearly won some of the middle rounds and showed a willingness to engage Mayweather in the center of the ring and on the ropes.

But Mayweather rallied late on and took the title with scores of 117-111 on two judges’ cards and 118-110 on the third, extending his unbeaten run to 43-0 with 26 knockouts.

“Miguel Cotto is a future hall of famer,” Mayweather said. “He is no push over.”

The fighters exchanged vicious punches in the 12th round with Mayweather landing the better of the shots. He appeared to wobble Cotto twice but couldn’t knock him down.

Mayweather, 35, said he hasn’t given up on trying to work out a deal on a mega fight with Filipino star Manny Pacquiao. Their previous talks have been scuttled by a number of issues, including the sharing of pay-per view revenue and drug testing.

“The fight I was looking to fight was against Manny Pacquiao,” Mayweather said. “I don’t think the fight would happen because of [Pacquiao’s promoter] Bob Arum. “Let’s give the fans what they want to see.”

It marked the 20th career title fight for Mayweather and the first time he has fought at 154 pounds since beating Oscar De La Hoya in 2007.

Mayweather was coming off a controversial win over Victor Ortiz to take the World Boxing Council welterweight title in September.

Saturday’s fight was a spirited affair with plenty of combinations by both fighters and a quick pace because there was very little clutching and grabbing.

Cotto (37-3, 30 knockouts) took some head and body shots from Mayweather early in the fight before putting together solid back-to-back rounds in the middle of the bout.

NEWS FROM ABS-CBN

Top Rank chief executive officer Bob Arum and Michael Koncz both slammed Mayweather Jr

[PHOTO - MANNY PACQUIAO'S BUSINESS ADVISER MICHAEL KONCZ]

MANILA, Philippines – Top Rank chief executive officer Bob Arum and Michael Koncz both slammed unbeaten boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr., saying that it is Mayweather who is unwilling to fight Filipino ring icon Manny "Pacman" Pacquiao.

Mayweather extended his undefeated streak to 43 fights after a hard-fought decision victory over Puerto Rico's Miguel Cotto last Saturday in Las Vegas (Sunday in Manila).

Fight fans are hoping that Mayweather will face Pacquiao next, but the unbeaten boxer dashed those hopes in the post-fight press conference, saying that Arum was getting in the way of the mega-fight.

[PHOTO - MANNY PACQUIAO'S CHIEF PROMOTER BOB ARUM]

In an interview with Ronnie Nathanielsz of Boxing Scene, both Arum and Koncz said it was Mayweather who doesn't want to fight Pacquiao.

"He is never going to fight us. It's never going to happen," Koncz, Pacquiao's adviser, told Nathanielsz.

"We know Manny can beat him, and Floyd knows that too. Why do you think he wants a 60-40 split?" Koncz added.

Arum, for his part, said that Mayweather was "totally crazy" for suggesting that he was preventing a Pacquiao-Mayweather fight from happening.

"The kid is deranged," he said.

Arum added that Mayweather looked "very, very vulnerable against Cotto," who constantly pressured and forced the unbeaten boxer against the ropes.

"It was a good fight and I had Cotto winning five rounds to four after nine rounds, and then Cotto faded down the stretch, and that Mayweather won the fight," Arum said.

The Top Rank boss added that while Mayweather was able to block Cotto's right hand, he was having trouble with the Puerto Rican's left.

"You see how Cotto was hitting him with that left hand almost at will. If he's fighting a southpaw who has a punch like Pacquiao, he'll suffer. He doesn't want to fight Pacquiao," Arum said.

In an interview with Larry Merchant right after his victory, Mayweather once again repeated his demands for Pacquiao to "take the test," referring to the random blood and urine tests that have been a requirement for all of Mayweather’s opponents.

Pacquiao has said last year that he has already agreed to Mayweather's demands regarding the random testing, something the unbeaten boxer has refused to acknowledge.

"That's a stupid thing, because Manny personally told him on the phone he agreed to the blood test," Koncz said.

"Of course we know that Pacquiao is willing to take the blood test, and that it’s always been 50-50 (in the split). He will not fight Pacquiao because there is one thing about Floyd: he knows boxing and if you solve one problem, there'll be another," Arum added.

Pacquiao is set to defend his World Boxing Organization welterweight belt against unbeaten boxer Timothy Bradley Jr. on June 9 in Las Vegas, and Koncz said the Filipino champion was focused on preparing for his title defense.

"I don't care what Mayweather does. We have a fight coming up on June 9, and that’s the fight we are going to concentrate on," he said.

MAY 3, 2012 NEWS REPORT

Mayweather claims Pacquiao is next Posted at 05/03/2012 9:47 PM

MANILA, Philippines – Unbeaten American boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. claimed that he plans on fighting Filipino boxing icon Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao next, should he be successful against Miguel Cotto this Saturday in Las Vegas (Sunday in Manila).

Mayweather called out his Filipino rival during the final press conference prior to his junior middleweight clash against Cotto at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

This is not the first time that Mayweather has said that Pacquiao is “next” on his list.

In a press conference before his fight against Victor Ortiz last September, the undefeated boxer memorably said, “Yes, Manny Pacquiao, you’re next.”

But the much awaited mega-fight failed to come to fruition after the two camps did not agree on the split of pay-per-view revenue, and the two pound-for-pound kings once again went their separate ways. -- Mornings @ ANC, May 3, 2012


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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