Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Cotto, Alvarez Bout Pits 'Best Fighting the Best'

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Cotto, Alvarez Bout Pits 'Best Fighting the Best'

Article excerpt

LAS VEGAS -- The sting from Mayweather-Pacquiao is still there, which makes anyone who spent $100 to watch that overhyped snoozer think twice about wasting their money on boxing again.

Miguel Cotto and Canelo Alvarez aren't to blame, but it does force them to have to work harder to sell their own fight. They get in the ring Saturday night for what is expected to be the biggest pay-per-view fight since 4.4 million households bought into the hype in May for Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao.

While the fight is an attractive one for boxing fans, it won't match the pay-per-view record set six months ago. But Oscar De La Hoya likes what it brings to the sport, even if it struggles at the box office.

"Mayweather was all about the business, how many pay-per-views, how much money was made," said De La Hoya, who promotes Alvarez. "We're going back to the roots of boxing where if you fight the best everything follows that. And this is a perfect example of the best fighting the best."

Fans of Gennady Golovkin would argue that, but Cotto vs. Alvarez just might be the best matchup of the year in boxing. Better yet for those contemplating spending $69.95 to watch it at home, it doesn't figure to lack for action.

This being boxing, of course, even a potentially great fight has its issues.

It was supposed to be for a piece of the middleweight title, but now only Alvarez can leave the ring as a champion if he wins. Cotto was stripped of his 160-pound title this week rather than agree to the demands of the ringmasters at the WBC, who wanted him to pay a $300,000 sanctioning fee to keep his belt.

That's on top of the $800,000 that Cotto spent earlier to avoid meeting Golovkin so he could take on Alvarez instead.

"For $1.1 million I can buy any belt I want and be champion of whatever I want in my house," Cotto said. "But this fight speaks for itself. I don't need a belt for this fight."

It's probably just as well, because the fight was barely a middleweight bout anyway. The two fighters agreed to meet at a 155- pound catch weight instead of fighting at the class limit of 160 pounds so the fight could get made. …

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