MIGUEL COTTO: SHINING IN ORLANDO
Cotto’s impressive resume includes wins over ex-world beltholders Mosley, Joshua Clottey, Paulie Malignaggi, Zab Judah, Yuri Foreman, Ricardo Mayorga and Antonio Margarito — the last four by knockout.
Cotto, 31, is coming off December’s 10th-round stoppage of Margarito, which avenged his 11th-round knockout loss — the first of Cotto’s career — in July of 2008. The Margarito win was the third straight stoppage for Cotto since losing to Manny Pacquiao in November of 2009.
The Margarito fight was also Cotto’s first under the watchful eye of trainer Pedro Diaz, a PHD in Pedagogical Sciences and an ex-university professor in sports science who replaced Manny Steward in the corner.
But training in Florida is nothing new for Miguel Cotto. The Puerto Rican star has prepared for numerous fights in the sunshine state with this camp being his second in Orlando.
“Training is going great. I am having fun and enjoying it more than ever. I love it here and I feel at home,” said Cotto. “I have the same focus and mentality to obtain a victory as I did when camp started. Pedro is a magnificent strategist.”
Cotto has kept the same company in his camp over the last few years, including his mother, who cooks for Team Cotto.
“I have the same diet as always,” said Cotto. “My mother is with me, so you can imagine how well I am eating.”
When he isn’t in the gym, Cotto spends his free time playing video games, cooking and spending time with his team and family. There are also two new additions to Team Cotto: French bulldogs named Tonka and Tika.
While Cotto’s team helps motivate him in and out of the gym, he credits his father, Miguel Cotto Sr., as his biggest inspiration to work hard and win on May 5.
Cotto’s father died in January 2010, a few months before Cotto’s ninth-round knockout victory over Yuri Foreman to win his current belt.
“The memory of my father is the biggest motivation in my life. I feel more motivated at this point than any other in my career,” said Cotto. “I feel more motivated to beat Mayweather than I did when I was training for my first world title.”
Cotto earned his first crown in September of 2004, when he won a clash of unbeaten fighters by sixth-round knockout over Kelson Pinto for the WBO’s vacant junior welterweight belt.