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COTTO LOSSES TO ALI IN FAREWELL FIGHT


PhilBoxing.com




Sadam Ali (26-1, 14 KOs) surprised the boxing world when he pummelled Miguel Cotto (41-6, 33KOs) enroute to a twelve round unanimous decision victory to wrest the WBO junior middleweight title. The scores were 115-113, 116-112 and 115-113 all for Ali. The 37-year-old Cotto has finally hang up his gloves after 17 years of professional boxing. He fought ten times at the Madison Square Garden and this is his second defeat in the arena. He is only Purerto Rican fighter to hold four division and six world titles.

* * *

Cotto became a champion in the super lightweight, welterweight, junior middleweight and middleweight divisions. The 29-year-old Ali is the 2006 and 2007 New York Golden Gloves winner and was a 2008 Olympian. He became pro and his only loss was a knock out in 2016 dealt by Jessie Vargas. Ali won the final four rounds on all three judges' scorecards to ensure the decision in his favor. Cotto ended up at the hospital after the fight because of a torn tendon in his left biceps.

* * *

"Feeling good. Feeling good with the performance," Cotto was quoted by ESPN. "Something happened to my left bicep, seventh round. I don't want to make excuses. Sadam won the fight. It is my last fight. I am good, and I want to be happy in my home with my family." According to CompuBox, Ali landed 139 of 647 punches (21 %), and Cotto connected with 163 of 536 (30 %). But Ali's dominance was clear in the second half of the fight after Cotto allegedly hurt his left biceps in the seventh round.

* * *

"I had him hurt here or there in the first couple of rounds. I knew I had to do something or he would have dug in," Ali said. "By the 11th round, I thought the fight was close." It was indeed a close fight in the earlier rounds. Cotto was still very much in action chasing Ali as he used his legs in moving and throwing quick jabs. But the age factor took its toll on the vereran champion as the bout progresses. Cotto slowed down by injury, started to absorb punishment from Ali.

* * *

Starting eighth round, Cotto was hit with some very hard shots with Ali doing most of the work and outboxing the Puerto Rican in the ninth and tenth. Cotto was not throwing a lot of blows and instead took a lot of fists. Ali came out blasting away with punches on Cotto in the eleventh round, throwing many shots here and there. In the twelfth and final round, there was little energy left in Cotto's arsenal as Ali outworked and outlanded him in the last three minutes of the bout.

* * *

Adones Aguelo will face veteran Japabese Nihito Arakawa in a 10-round bout at the Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan tonight. Aguelo will try to end the streak of losses he acquired in international competitions hoping he can get with a win over Arakawa. Aguelo has lost seven straight fights against fighters on international soil. He lost to foreign foes like Erick de Leon, Pavel Malikov, Miguel Marriaga, Casey Ramos, Will Tomlinson and Sergio Thompson in going to the US, Mexico and Australia.

* * *

So far his last win in an international fight was against Hirohito Fukuhara in Japan way back in 2014. “Adones trained well for this. For me, I think the Japanese fans will have fun. Adones has been tested and will go the distance. Our chance, however, is to knock out the opponent,” said Aguelo’s coach Brix Flores of Rex Wakee Salud Promotions . Aguelo has a record of 28-16-2 with 19 knockouts, while Arakawa has a slate of 30-6-1 with 18 knockouts. Aguelo hails from Matin-ao, Maasin City, Southern Leyte and now resides in Mandaue City.

* * *

Michael Conlan and Shakur Stevenson will continue their respective journey to stardom after their successful amateur careers where they both won medals in the 2016 Rio Olympics. Both fighters will compete in six-round bouts on the Vasyl Lomachenko-Guillermo Rigondeaux undercard on December 9 in New York. Top Rank dreams of one day promoting a superfight involving Conlan (4-0, 4 KOs) and Stevenson (3-0, 1 KO) but for the mean time, they will engage in bouts with separate foes.

* * *

Conlan will fight Luis Fernando Molina (4-3-1, 1 KO). Stevenson will face Oscar Mendoza (4-2, 2 KOs). “I’m really excited to go back to The Garden,” said Conlan. “It’s my first time back since my pro debut and I’m looking forward to putting on another great show for all the fans that are coming to see me, it feels already like it’s my second home.” Conlan has several fans in New York among the Irish. But Stevenson can have a following there also since he comes from nearby Newark, New Jersey.

* * *

Shakur Stevenson won the 2014 AIBA Youth World Championships and 2014 Youth Olympic Games. In 2015 he won the Senior US Olympic Trials, and qualified for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In Rio, Stevenson won a silver medal, losing to Robeisy Ramirez of Cuba in the finals. He was the highest male medalist for the USA since Claressa Shields won gold in women's boxing. Despite the loss, Stevenson was dubbed "the next Mayweather" by Floyd Mayweather Jr. himself.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Maloney L. Samaco.


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