Pacquiao-Cotto Power and Speed

The fight between Miguel Angel Cotto and Manny Pacquiao highlights two traits needed by world class boxers, power and speed. 

 Cotto is regarded as a power puncher while Pacquiao although has power in his mitts is more well known by his speed.  These two traits will play a huge role on the outcome of this fight.

 Power

 The power of a punch in general is defined by two things: First, by the weight thrown behind that punch, and second by the speed by which that punch is thrown.

 The reason Cotto is an interesting fighter to watch is because he throws all his punches with a lot of power.  He puts his body behind every punch.  His conditioning level is so high that he can sustain this work-rate all throughout a championship fight. 

 This same power was instrumental in beating fighters faster than him.  Shane Mosley and Zab Judah, two stylist boxers who rely on speed for their wins have been beaten by Cotto.

 Cotto is a natural welterweight.  He should have a heavier punch that if cleanly connects may hurt Pacquiao.  Pacquiao although is expected to be in tip-top shape is still human, and can get hurt.  A heavy punch thrown at the right time may win the fight for Cotto.

 On the other hand, Pacquiao brings in a different variable alien to Cotto.  Pacquiao’s power is generated not only by his weight but also by his speed.  A lot of his sparring partner’s swear that he has the power of a middleweight (160 lbs.).  The speed factor is so pivotal that if Pacquiao and Cotto weigh the same on fight day, Pacquiao will readily multiply his power through the speed he inherently possesses.

 There is no doubt about the Filipino’s power in the 140 and above weight category.  He demonstrated that he can drop a “naturally bigger man”.  He did so against Hatton with one punch and with de la Hoya with several.

 Speed

 Cotto may be fast versus other welterweights but Pacquiao is clearly faster.

 Cotto looked perplexed in his last fight against Joshua Clottey (although it can be argued that a cut above the eye that caused blood to cover his eye may have slowed him down).  Clottey, who was evidently more agile was picking his punches, connecting when he wanted with jabs and straights and left Cotto flatfooted at times revealing a weaknesses in the latter’s defense.

 Cotto needs speed to get away and react to Pacquiao’s punches and to be able to tag Pacman with his own left hooks.

  Ability to Position for the Punch (agility and leg power)

 Over the last couple of fights, Pacquiao has proven to have honed the ability to move well and find the openings to throw at angles. Leg movement and positioning honed by rigorous drills at the gym molded Pacquiao into a well oiled piece of machinery.

 Cotto lately has been a stand up fighter relying on torso movement rather than leg movement to find openings.  He relies heavily on his power punches to the body that he does not seem to give emphasis on moving away from his opponent.

If Cotto can find a way to cut the ring and box-in Pacquiao, then throws well timed body shots, he may be able to slow down Pacquiao. With calculated movements Cotto can conserve enough energy for the long haul and steal the win in the latter rounds.

 Although the speed factor gives Pacquiao a huge edge, as they say, a power puncher will always have an advantage in a boxing match.  In fact, a power puncher will always have chance to win a fight even if he is way down on points.  Cotto’s power will be something to watch out for.

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