On December 1, 2012, Madison Square Garden hosted the Main Event between Miguel Cotto (37-4 with 30 KOs) v. Austin Trout (26-0 with 14 KOs). Both fighters have excellent records. However, Trout is still the WBA Superwelterweight Champ.
This 12 round fight was very even until the 10th round. Cotto progressively lost steam, missed shots often and could not connect with enough power punches by the end of the fight. The 11th and 12th rounds were comfortably in Trout’s favor, which helped him win the fight in a unanimous decision.
Cotto won rounds 3, 5, 6 and 9, whereas Trout won rounds 10, 11 and 12, finishing the fight convincingly. The earlier rounds were very much tied, as were the 7th and 8th. There were two low blows to Cotto. One was in the early rounds and another in the 9th. No points were deducted, and therefore, these low blows did not affect the outcome of the scoring of this fight (and would not have even if deductions had been made).
Trout is the younger fighter at 27. He’s taller with significantly better reach. In addition, his superior conditioning showed in the later rounds. Cotto displayed a good ability to punish Trout’s body in the earlier rounds through the 9th round. He progressively lost steam after that. On the other hand, Trout picked up steam and looked far more relaxed with superior punching power by the end of the 12th round. One judge scored the bout 119-109, with the other two scoring it 117-111, all in Trout’s favor.
To prevail against Trout, Cotto needs to train harder. Specifically, he needs a firmer schedule of running together with sprints. In addition, Cotto needs more experience sparring with taller fighters in order to improve his skills fighting on the inside. At 32, the body clock is working against him so he’ll have to work harder than in his twenties. He might benefit from better nutrition and more rest.
Cotto indicated that he wasn’t retiring although some fans expect that he will retire within a few years. If he is to continue, he’ll need to train better to improve upon his performance from last night. Meanwhile, Trout called out to Canelo Alvarez, the WBC titleholder at 154 pounds. He spoke in Spanish to Alvarez, indicating that they should fight next.
Featherweight fighter Jayson Velez came in 19-0 with 14 KOs and won a decisive victory in the 3rd round over Mexican fighter Salvador Sanchez II (who came in 30-4-3 with 18 KOs). Sanchez was never in the fight. Velez fought linearly by walking his opponent across the ring and throwing a series of straight punches to the body. Velez is good at dodging punches. At best, Sanchez was competitive in the 1st round and fell apart afterward. The referee had to stop the fight in the 3rd round because Sanchez was simply outclassed and unable to respond effectively to attacks by Velez.
Velez is a taller and lankier fighter as a junior lightweight prospect in the 125 pound category. He’s fast with very good footwork. He works off the ropes well and is hard to hit. Due to his experience and excellent conditioning, he will be very hard to beat anytime soon. Only an elite boxer with an Olympic style training regimen would have any chance against Velez. In the ring, Velez is very much the aggressor. He throws many effective punches and cuts off the ring expertly.
On the other undercard bout, middleweight contender Daniel Jacobs (24-1 with 21 KOs) won a convincing 5th round KO against Chris Fitzpatrick, who was 15-2 with 6 KOs and from Cleveland, Ohio. Fitzpatrick is a cancer survivor. Jacobs was in good form last night and he is well on his way to a world title at some point in his career.
Saturday night’s fights were thoroughly engaging and entertaining. A lot of boxing issues were settled. Collectively, Trout, Velez and Jacobs advanced to greater challenges in the ring. The fans have quite a bit of good championship boxing coming up.