Lem Satterfield

Arum doubts New York will license Margarito for Cotto rematch

“We’re going to keep the card together, and we’re moving it to another location. It’s such a hot show that we’ll sell plenty of tickets for.”

Crandall, who spoke via video testimony at Wednesday’s hearing, operated on Margarito in May at the John Moran Eye Center in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Considered to be among of the nation’s premiere eye surgeons, Crandall assured the commission on Wednesday that Margarito’s eye was healthy enough that he could safely compete as a boxer once again.

It was Crandall, in May, who performed surgery which removed a cataract and placed an artificial lens into Margarito’s eye. Crandall then advised Margarito not to box again until December.

Top Rank officials forwarded the results of Crandall’s procedure to the NYSAC and then contacted Madison Square Garden to make arrangements to schedule Cotto-Margarito on Dec. 3.

But on Halloween, Top Rank received notification from the commission that there might be a problem with Margarito’s eye, leading to Wednesday’s hearing.

“I’m just angry at the treatment we received in New York, and I’m angry at the way that New York handled the situation,” said Arum. “I just don’t appreciate the kangaroo so-called hearing that they put us through.”

The New York Daily News reported that all but 1,500 tickets had been sold for the show at Madison Square Garden, where Cotto is extremely popular.

Cotto is 8-0 with four knockouts overall in New York, and 6-0 at Madison Square Garden, where he has decisioned former world titleholders Shane Mosley, Joshua Clottey and Paulie Malignaggi, and knocked out Zab Judah.

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“I’m just disappointed for the New York fans. We were practically sold out,” said Arum. “I’m disappointed for Madison Square Garden. I’m disappointed for all of the people that work in The Garden. I’m just really angry at what happened.”

Cotto-Margarito is a rematch of their clash in July of 2008, when Margarito’s 11th-round knockout dethroned Cotto as WBA welterweight beltholder.

Cotto-Margarito II is supported by a stacked undercard featuring RING No. 1-rated lightweight and WBA titleholder Brandon Rios (28-0-1, 21 KOs), unbeaten RING No. 8-rated Philadelphia welterweight Mike Jones (25-0, 19 KOs) and RING No. 10-rated New Jersey junior middleweight Pawel Wolak (19-1-1, 19 KOs).

Also to appear is Notre Dame graduate and ligthheavyweight prospect Mike Lee (7-0, 4 KOs) against an opponent to be determined.

Rios is in pursuit of his 11th win in a row against THE RING’s No. 8-rated Johnny Murray (31-1, 18 KOs), and, like Margarito, is trained by Robert Garcia.

Jones will be in against Argentina’s Sebastian Lujan (38-5-2, 24 KOs) for the No. 1 spot in the IBF’s ratings, with the winner being in line to meet IBF No. 2-rated Randall Bailey (42-7, 36 KOs) for the organization’s belt that was recently vacated by Andre Berto (28-1, 22 KOs).

Jones has also been mentioned as a potential opponent for Pacquiao.

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