Bob Arum, CEO of Top Rank, announced today that the mega-fight between boxing’s No. 1 pound-for-pound king and the reigning Boxing Writers Association of America’s (BWAA) Fighter of the Year, Manny “PacMan” Pacquiao, and the pride of Puerto Rico and three-time world champion Miguel Cotto is official. “Manny Pacquiao and Miguel Cotto have reached an agreement to fight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on Saturday, November 14,” said Arum. The fight will be seen live on HBO Pay-Per-View. Top Rank is working on a major media tour to start right after Labor Day. Further details will be announced as we get closer to kicking off the tour.”
Pacquiao (49-3-2, 37 KOs), of General Santos City, Philippines, has won six world titles in as many different weight divisions ranging from 112 to 140 pounds. His performance in 2008 was described as “Henry Armstrongesque,” winning world titles at 130 and 135 pounds with victories over Juan Manuel Marquez and David Diaz, respectively, and knocking out and retiring Oscar De La Hoya at 147 pounds to finish the trifecta. This year, he picked up where he left off last year – winning another world title in a new weight division — dealing defending junior welterweight champion Ricky Hatton a one-punch second-round knockout on May 2.
Cotto (34-1, 27 KOs), from Caguas, Puerto Rico, has sold more tickets at Madison Square Garden in this millennium than any other fighter. He has held a world title every year since 2004. Puerto Rico’s most exciting fighter, Cotto held the World Boxing Organization (WBO) junior welterweight crown from 2004-2006, successfully defending it six times before vacating it to capture the World Boxing Association (WBA) welterweight title at the end of 2006, a title he held for nearly as long. He won his second welterweight title in February this year, knocking out Michael Jennings in the fifth round at Madison Square Garden to become the WBO welterweight champion. Notable scalps on Cotto’s belt include Sugar Shane Mosley, Zab Judah, Joshua Clottey, Pauli Malinaggi, and Demarcus Corley.