Bob Arum opens up on Miguel Cotto’s future, his newfound bond with Freddie Roach, the allure of a Sergio Martinez fight, and more

Miguel Cotto on Saturday night prior to his victory over Delvin Rodriguez (Photo: Chris Farina – Top Rank)

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By Chris Robinson

Fresh off of a resounding 3rd round TKO over Delvin Rodriguez this past weekend, Puerto Rican star and former three-division titlist Miguel Cotto’s future looks bright as he enters the final stretch of his illustrious career.

A promotional free agent, Cotto worked with his original promoter Top Rank for the Rodriguez fight after seeing bouts against Floyd Mayweather and Austin Trout in 2012 co-promoted by Golden Boy Promotions.

One of the biggest stars in all of boxing, Cotto has the luxury of picking from the most enticing matches available and he certainly seems to have some serious options floating around.

I caught up with Top Rank CEO Bob Arum at Monday’s media brunch in Los Angeles in advance of this weekend’s Timothy Bradley-Juan Manuel Marquez pay per view attraction and got his thoughts on Cotto’s choices moving forward.

Read below for Arum’s views on Miguel’s excellent return to the ring, how to approach a potential fight with Saul Alvarez, why a showdown with lineal middleweight champion Sergio Martinez is so attractive, the chemistry between Cotto and his new trainer Freddie Roach, and more.

Watching Cotto in action on Saturday night in Florida…
“It was like deja vu. I remember the way Cotto used to fight. His great strength, his body-punching. And Freddie [Roach], to his credit, doesn’t change a veteran when he takes over. But he looks for the veteran’s strengths and he works with that. Miguel Cotto I thought was devastatingly good. A real throwback.”

Knowing ahead of time that Freddie would mesh with Miguel…
“I really thought it was a good fit. Miguel’s a very intelligent guy. I know that he had never had a trainer like Freddie. And I felt that they would bond.”

Why it was natural for Cotto to return to Top Rank…
“Well [Top Rank president] Todd [duBoef] and Miguel are more than just promoter and fighter. They’re like brothers. Todd was the one who discovered him after the Olympics years ago and he has a very close relationship with Cotto.”

Miguel’s horizon…
“I think he has a big future. As to who he is going to fight and when, we’ll be talking to him and we’ll work it out. But the world is opening to him. With Freddie, I think his career has been extended another two or three years.”

How a fight with Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez could become a possibility for Cotto…
“Let’s see. Miguel said that and that was based on his belief that Canelo has a contract with Golden Boy. I don’t know one way or the other whether he does or doesn’t. We’re not going to negotiate anything with Canelo until we see if he has a contract or doesn’t have a contract. If he has a contract with Golden Boy and we want to make that fight, we obviously are going to have to negotiate with Golden Boy. We’re not going to breach or interfere with any contract.”

Why Cotto is intrigued by a match with Sergio Martinez…
“Sergio Martinez has a great appeal to Miguel, because they would fight for the middleweight title. And Miguel would have the opportunity to be the first Puerto Rican to win four titles in four different weight divisions.”

Whether or not Martinez is slowing down following his razor-thin victory over Martin Murray this past April…
“IT’s hard to say. Martinez is a very good fighter; he’s very, very quick. But I think the strength of both fighters would play against each other and it would be a tremendous fight.”

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