Mayweather vs. Cotto, real fighters in a real fight

Since I couldn’t afford to order Saturday’s PPV fight, a more affluent friend from back East offered to purchase it, then call me with updates. Here’s a photo of my buddy watching the fights with his family. We knew the President was a Mayweather fan, but the first lady? I'm not so sure.

Saturday night’s boxing show at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas proves beyond a doubt that Boxing is not on the decline. The packed Arena, the Pay for View numbers, the many show sponsors, plus the masterful performance by Floyd Mayweather Jr. (43-0, 26 KOs) and Miguel Cotto (37-3, 30 KOs) are proof of that. 

During the post-fight press conference, Floyd Mayweather Jr. holds up the winning belt after defeating Miguel Cotto. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Peace rains eternal... after the curmudgeon and the smart aleck meet behind the scenes on Friday, May 4, 2012, to patch up their differences. After having removed Larry Merchant from his Christmas card list, Floyd Mayweather Jr. promised to put him back on it.

The four year age difference didn't matter as much as the five inch difference in arm reach that favored Floyd Mayweather, Jr. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Still, Miguel Cotto (R) managed to get in close to connect with this straight right to the face of Floyd Mayweather Jr. during their WBA super welterweight title fight. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images

Miguel Cotto (L) connects with a left hook to the face of Floyd Mayweather Jr. during their WBA super welterweight title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images

Floyd Mayweather Jr. (L) lands a right to the head of Miguel Cotto during their WBA super welterweight title fight. Mayweather never failed to match Cotto's output. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

What was he thinking? Instead of blocking this punch, Miguel Cotto (R) has his hands down.

(L-R) Cutman Rafael Garcia works on the nose of Floyd Mayweather Jr. between rounds during his WBA super welterweight title fight against Miguel Cotto. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images

Floyd Mayweather Jr. embraces Miguel Cotto after their WBA super welterweight title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 5, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images

Since the President was unavailable to carry the championship belts, Floyd Mayweather, Jr. elicited the help of singer Justin Bieber to carry them on Mayweather's ring walk. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images

Singer Justin Bieber is all smiles after his buddy, Floyd Mayweather, Jr. gets awarded the decision. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images

(L-R) Singer Justin Bieber, Rapper Lil Wayne, boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr., rapper Curtis '50 Cent' Jackson and boxer Yuriorkis Gamboa pose for a photo after the Floyd Mayweather Jr. victory. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images

Mayweather, an eight time world champion, earned yet another championship belt when he defeated the WBA super welterweight world champ Miguel Cotto by an unanimous decision.

In the latter stages of this fight, Cotto (the fan favorite) appeared to be the aggressor and at times looked as if he was in position to take control. After all, he did have Mayweather’s nose bloodied.

The crafty Mayweather gained his advantage by skillfully slipping punches and performing some late round heroics, either with an impressive flurry or edging out Cotto in the quantity of punches landed.

Despite the one-sided scoring, (the judges scored the bout 117-111, 117-111, 118-110, all for Mayweather), most boxing fans saw the bout as being closer. Of all the rounds, Cotto definitely took Round #8 after launching his most unbridled attack of the night.

After defeating the 31-year-old Cotto (37-3-0, with 30 KOs), Mayweather extends his record to 43 wins without a defeat dating back to October 11, 1996; that was the night he made his pro-debut. Surely, both Mayweather and Cotto will be remembered for this great fight.

To get an even better perspective of the fight, we’ve added this video of the newly crowned WBA Welterweight Champion, Brooklyn, New York’s favorite son, Paulie Malignaggi:

On the undercard, (L-R) light middleweight Saul “Canelo” Alvarez is shown landing a left on the chin of Shane Mosley during their bout at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 5, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

(L-R) Saul “Canelo” Alvarez throws a left to the head of Shane Mosley during their WBC super welterweight title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 5. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

In the co-feature, 21 year-old Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (40-0-1, 29 KOs) of Juanacatlán, Jalisco, Mexico, made the fifth defense of his WBC light middleweight title with a win over the 40 year-old Shane Mosley (46-8-1, 39 KOs) of Pomona, CA, the former five time World Title holder in three weight divisions.

At 40 years-old, the power and speed is gone from Mosley punches. Mosley’s 21-year-old opponent clearly out-punched him from the very beginning. Then in Round #3 came a serious (“unintentional”) head butt from Mosley. Fortunately, the seriousness of this cut above the Alvarez’s left eye, the first cut of his career, did not affect his performance.

From that third round on, it appeared Alvarez took every round featuring the old one-two combination, hard jab then straight right hand with plenty of power.

As far as warnings being issued to the boxers, referee Jay Nady became monotonous with the same warning issued to Mosley, “Watch your head Shane!” After awhile the veteran was trying every dirty trick to either open the cut further or make it as painful as possible. He rubbed it with his glove. He brushed against it with the top of his head. In retaliation, Alvarez kept snapping Mosley’s head back or he add an brutal uppercut. If you’re a Mosley fan, the battering was difficult to watch. Total power punches landed in the fight, Alvarez 252, Mosley 100.

Also on the fight card:

(L-R) Carlos Quintana is shown knocking DeAndre Latimore off his feet in the sixth round of a scheduled 10 round welterweight bout at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images

Additional fights that filled out the fight card: In the sixth round of a 10 round, super-welterweight bout, Carlos Quintana of Moca, Puerto Rico ko’ed Deandre Latimore of Las Vegas, Nevada to improve his record to 29 wins-3 losses with 23 KOs. Latimore’s record now drops to (23-4-0, 17 KOs).

The remainder of the fights featured a bout won by the still undefeated Antonio “Simple Man” Orozco (13-0-0, 9 KOs) of National City, CA plus several other local fighters. See complete fight card results below.

Saturday’s boxing show went a long way to renew interest in the sport. At the end of the night, all the boxing critics, the habitual naysayers who love only the mixed martial arts, will have to agree the boxers on this boxing card, not only gave it their all, they left their mark by giving us an outstanding performance.

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