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December 03, 2017

By Scott Shaffer

Cotto goes out with close loss, likely torn bicep

Sadam Ali W12 Miguel Cotto... Sadam Ali had the night of a lifetime, defeating a boxing legend and winning the WBO junior middleweight championship in his hometown of New York City.  In Madison Square Garden, the same building where he won New Yor City's Golden Gloves as an amateur, Ali ended the career of Miguel Cotto by close but clear-cut decision unanimous decision.  Official scores favored Ali 115-113 (twice) and 116-112. Boxingtalk and HBO's Harold Lederman both agreed with the 115-113 verdict.  Despite a visibly injured left bicep, Cotto was classy in defeat and reaffirmed his intention to retire from boxing.  Cotto exits the sport with world titles at 140, 147, 154 and 160 pounds and a 41-6 record. He's destined for the Hall of Fame. Ali, a natural welterweight who moved up to 154 for the chance to fight Cotto, is now 26-1 with his only loss to Jessie Vargas in 2016. He's clearly above his best weight at 154, so either he'll have to be matched carefully at 154 or look to immediately cash out, perhaps against Saul "Canelo" Alvarez, who, like Ali, is promoted by Golden Boy Promotions.

The fight was both competitive and enjoyable. Ali staggered Cotto in round two and hurt the Puerto Rican legend again in round four, but did not press for the knockout.  In round six, Cotto turned the tide by hurting Ali, and he continued to rally, but suffered an apparent torn left bicep, which was visibly misshapen after the fight. Cotto said during his post-fight interview the injury occurred in round seven, although he continued to box effectively into the eighth.  By round ten, Ali regained the momentum, and with both his father and his trainer screaming at him to be more aggressive, Ali had a very strong eleventh round. The twelfth round was closer, but Ali deserved the win. source: hbo

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