The battle between Floyd Mayweather, Jr. and Miguel Cotto was described before it happened by some as the fight no one wanted to see. Those thinking it was fluff or filler or something less just because the competitor in the ring with Mayweather wasn't Manny Pacquiao must be getting used to the taste of crow by now.
The fight not only lived up to expectations, but exceeded them. I'm one of the many who would have loved to have seen Cotto upset Mayweather, but that didn't happen. What fans did get to see was an epic battle in the ring at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Fans thirsting for Mayweather vs. Pacquiao might never get their dream fight, but the one that took place May 5 shouldn't be discounted. We saw each competitor at their best, in a battle to the finish. What more can we ask for?
The unanimous decision for Mayweather wasn't controversial, but it was hard-won. Cotto faded somewhat toward the end, but gave Mayweather a hard challenge, often pushing him to the ropes. Mayweather was able to fight out of being backed, but not without taking punishment.
It's impossible to say either fighter earned their money, as the amounts are so ridiculous. Mayweather got a guaranteed 32 million with more to come in from pay-per-view revenue, and Cotto took at least eight million. Of course, it's not either fighter's fault that the purses were so high, and they can't be blamed for taking them. It's a part of our celebrity obsessed materialistic culture.
We should congratulate both fighters for giving it their all and delivering a bout to remind us what we like about boxing. Cotto and Mayweather each can hold their heads high, wherever they decide to go with their careers.
That said, the competitors did give fans an epic fight that will be highlights in the careers of each. At 43-0, Mayweather says he is leaning "80-20" toward retiring. I know Pacquiao fans will rage about that, but in defense of Mayweather, can you blame him?
He just made the biggest guaranteed purse in history. He fought an epic battle that will be remembered for a very long time. He's going to jail, and if he wants to quit fighting to get his personal life in order, why not?
Jeff Musall has been a fan of good boxing since he watched the Thrilla in Manila as a kid with his father years ago. He was very pleased with the Mayweather vs. Cotto fight.