It has taken Miguel Cotto over a decade, with several detours along the way, to get to this point in his career, but the Puerto Rican three-division world champ is finally in the driver's seat when it comes to his own career.
Reports are circulating the Cotto is one of three fighters currently vying for a Manny Pacquiao bout later this year. Along with Timothy Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez, Cotto has submitted a money proposal that could see him get a shot to avenge his 2009 TKO 12 loss to the Filipino pop culture icon and 8-division world titlist.
There's also a chance that Cotto may get a second shot at trying to upset Floyd Mayweather Jr. after an entertaining unanimous decision loss to the pound-for-pound top dog last May. A lot depends on when/if Mayweather decides to resume his career, but the interest in Cotto II could be there and the money definitely would be there.
A third option is for Cotto to use his drawing power and positive career karma to entice one of the reigning junior middleweight titlists into a showdown. Ideally, Cotto would aim for Saul "El Canelo" Alvarez and the big money that comes from two big fan bases meeting one another over a truly meaningful bout. But the 154 lb. division is full of big names and solid fights. Cornelius Bundrage and Austin Trout both have belts and no defenses lined up. Names like James Kirkland, Carlos Molina, and Delvin Rodriquez are also available for Cotto's December return date.
When signed to Top Rank Promotions, there were several times Cotto seemed to get the short end of the stick. Whether it was the beating he absorbed from an Antonio Margarito who may or may not have been using loaded hand wraps or having to concede to every pre-fight demand in the Pacquiao clash, Cotto hasn't always been treated like the star he is.
Now, even after three high-profile losses, Cotto is possibly one of the top three or four draws in the United Stated and, obviously, still a main stage fighter.
This time, though, Cotto is a promotional free agent calling his own shots. It's always good to see a fighter take control over his own destiny. Hopefully, as Cotto's working conditions get better and his bank account grows, other fighters will follow his example.
Paul Magno was a licensed official in the state of Michoacan, Mexico and a close follower of the sport for more than thirty years. His work can also be found on Fox Sports and The BoxingTribune. In the past, Paul has done work for Inside Fights, The Queensberry Rules and Eastside Boxing.