Miguel Cotto, Carlos Quintana Conference Call Quotes
22.11.06 - In 2006, SHOWTIME continued to live up to its billing as Americaís No. 1 Boxing Network by televising the most compelling championship fights on the first Saturday of every month. The memorable 20th anniversary year of SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING will conclude in sensational style on Saturday, Dec. 2, with an outstanding world championship doubleheader. The telecastís opening bout on SHOWTIME (9 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the west coast) will feature exciting, hard-hitting Antonio Margarito (33-4, 1 NC, 24 KOs) defending his WBO welterweight title against dangerous WBO No. 5 contender Joshua Clottey (30-1, 1 NC, 20 KOs)..
Article posted on 22.11.2006
In the second half of the co-featured main events, Puerto Ricans Miguel Cotto (27-0, 22 KOs) and southpaw Carlos Quintana (23-0, 18 KOs) collide for the vacant WBA 147-pound crown. The event will be promoted by Top Rank, Inc., in association with Northeast Promotions, and take place at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.
Cotto: I am very happy to be here and am looking forward to the fight. I am sure it will be a thrilling for everyone. I am looking forward to putting on a good show for everyone.
Quintana: I want to say thanks to SHOWTIME and all the people that made this fight possible. I am very happy to be with you today as I get ready for my fight Dec. 2.
Question: Miguel, how is training going and how much more comfortable do you feel at 147?
Cotto: I have worked really hard for this fight. I am happy that I do not have to lose those last seven pounds that I always had to for 140. I think that (moving up a notch in weight) will make me a much better fighter. I think you will also see the difference when I fight.
Question: Miguel, what difference do you feel besides not having to lose the weight?
Cotto: It has been a really good training camp and a delight for me, knowing that I can feel strong. My stamina will be much greater for this fight. I think everything will be much better for this fight, and that will mean victory without a doubt on Dec. 2.
Question: Carlos, do you think that being a welterweight all along gives you an advantage?
Quintana: Being a welterweight all my life has been good for me. When Cotto moves up it will be good for him too. But when I beat him, it will probably be because of my quality as a boxer and not necessarily because he came up to the welterweight division.
Question: Miguel, both of you being from Puerto Rico, how well do you know Carlos?
Cotto: In the amateur days, I did have an opportunity to see him fight. The only thing basically that I know about him is that he fought (Joel) Julio.
Question: Carlos, what do you think about what Cotto has been able to do? Is this fight a key for you to getting the kind of exposure that he getting?
Quintana: I recognize that Carlos is one of the best fighters at 140 pounds; however, I am looking forward to this opportunity to fight against him at 147. Hopefully (after I win) I will get the same exposure that he has been getting over the last few years.
Question: Miguel, does it pose any particular problems fighting against an unbeaten southpaw?
Cotto: That is why we have been training and sparring a lot of rounds against left-handers. The preparation has been great. You just prepare yourself for them so there will be no difficulties. We work real hard everyday on that.
Question: Miguel, in the past did you go into the ring thinking you had to conserve energy? Did having to lose those seven pounds (to make 140) hamper you in any way in terms of the strategy for the fight once you got into a fight?
Cotto: Well, that is probably true. Sometimes when you work so hard to make the weight, you do not feel like you are going to have as much left for a fight, and you do have to fight in spurts. You have to rest a little, pick and choose when you want to fight. At 147, I will not need to do that. I feel good working at this weight and think it is really going to help me.
Question: Miguel, when was the last time you felt this good physically going into a fight?
Cotto: I think going back to the (Kelson) Pinto fight, the (Randall) Bailey fight, I felt I was good and strong enough even though I did have a little trouble making the weight. But I felt real strong for those two fights. Since then, I have been thinking maybe it is time to move up.
Question: Miguel, where did you train for this fight?
Cotto: Puerto Rico.
Question: Miguel, what was your opinion of the Quintana-Julio fight?
Cotto: I thought it was a real good fight for him (Quintana). I thought he had a real nice game plan. Whatever he needed to do to win, I think he did it to perfection.
Question: Miguel, was there anything you saw in there that you plan to exploit?
Cotto: I think more about being in the ring with him rather than really about what he might do. I think I need a couple of rounds actually with him in a ring to decide which way to go or what I can do against him.
Question: Carlos, can you describe how important the Julio fight was to your career?
Quintana: It was a great opportunity for us to fight and to get the exposure that we got. We believe that because of that exposure we are here training and looking forward for to fighting for the world championship on Dec. 2.
Question: Carlos, do you feel by beating Cotto you will become the No. 1 boxer in your country?
Quintana: Everybody has their own legacy and their own trail to walk. There is no question that Cotto has his own path in Puerto Rico and he was probably the No. 1 boxer for a long time. But now I am in his way and if I win this fight, then I will have to walk my own path and stand my own way in Puerto Rico.
Question: Miguel, do you feel that in addition to fighting for a world championship that you are in some ways protecting your Puerto Rican turf?
Cotto: I always train to win and I train really hard. Victory is the only thing in our mind and everything around it is great. People can write about it or whatever. But all I know is that I train to win and I expect to win and I am going to come out victorious. Everything else will take care of itself.
Question: Miguel, even though you are a couple years younger than Carlos, you have had more pro fights and have held a world title. What are your advantages in this fight?
Cotto: Without a doubt, I think I have a lot of experience with a lot of quality opponents. They have given me the opportunity to learn more and I think I do have that over Carlos. I have more experience and I have been fighting a lot of quality fighters.
Question: Carlos, why do think that even though you are undefeated, and had a great victory against Julio that it took you longer to get a world title shot than it did Miguel?
Quintana: I am undefeated and on Dec. 2 I will still be undefeated and everybody in the world will know who I am.
Question: Carlos, what are your advantages over Miguel?
Quintana: Basically, my advantage is that they probably do not know me as well and I have been sacrificing myself for such a long time to get ready for this opportunity, and come Dec. 2 I am going to take care of this fight.
Question: Miguel, you are used to having the whole crowd for yourself. Do you think that because you are fighting another top Puerto Rican the crowd will be more divided?
Cotto: People are used to seeing me fight and seeing me in great fights. They will always get a great fight from me. I expect the crowd to be interested no matter who they are rooting for.
Question: Carlos, do you think the crowd will be divided?
Quintana: This is my opportunity to show everyone what I am capable of doing in a big-time fight and in a big-time atmosphere. I am looking forward to showing them who I really am.
Question: Miguel, what other southpaws have you faced in your career?
Cotto: Besides (DeMarcus) Corley, I had one early in my career, but I could not tell you his name.
Question: Carlos, are you prepared to have to dig down and brawl if you have to?
Quintana: I am ready for any kind of fight. People may remember my last fight. I also am a brawler and I can fight. I can go punch to punch with anybody. When the bell rings, the victory is going to be mine.
Question: Miguel, are you ready for a chess match or a slugfest?
Cotto: I really could not tell you what kind of fight it is going to be. We have to get in the ring and actually do it to find out what kind of fight it is going to be. But I am ready for anything and everything. That is why you prepare yourself and that is why you work so hard, so when the time comes, if you have to brawl, you brawl and if you have to box, you box.
Question: Miguel, do you think there is a difference between Quintana and Corley, who gave you a bit of trouble?
Cotto: It is hard to tell really what to expect. I know that after seeing Corley I would know what to do if I had to fight him again. I have never faced Quintana, so I am not going to know what I need to do until we get into the ring. That is when it is going to be decided.
Question: Carlos, what do you think is different about Cotto as opposed to Julio, who you had a pretty easy time with?
Quintana: Every fighter has their own style and like we said, it is hard to tell what is going to happen until we are in the fight. Hopefully, after the fight we can answer all these questions.
Question: Miguel, how different will it be to have Puerto Rican fans rooting against you?
Cotto: We are going to (fight). We are not thinking about that. I know there will be fans for both of us. I also know that after the great fight and after they raise my hand, everyone will be my fan.
Question: Miguel, Quintana is a southpaw who fought Julio at angles. Have you faced anyone with that type of style -- who likes to give a lot of angles? If so, who?
Cotto: Not that I recall. (But) every fighter is different. Until I get in the ring, I will not see if he fights me the same way. You cannot prepare for something by the way he fights one guy because you do not know the way he is going to fight you. You have to find out in the ring.
Question: Miguel, Ricky Hatton struggled when he moved up to 147 and then returned to 140. Why will you not have a similar experience?
Cotto: All I can tell you is I was having problems making 140. I feel great at 147 and I never see myself going anywhere but 147.
Question: So you will not be returning to 140 regardless of the outcome of this fight?
Question: Carlos, Julio came into your fight with a reputation of being a very strong puncher, a very aggressive type fighter. Do you see Miguelís style being similar to his?
Quintana: We are ready for a different style of fighting. It all depends on how the fight develops. We are going to be ready to fight any way that Cotto comes to us.
Question: Carlos, many came away with the impression after the Julio fight of you being a great boxer, but do you believe your punching power is underrated?
Quintana: My record shows that I am a good boxer and a good puncher. So I am ready for either way. I (cannot predict how) the fight is going to end, but I know that I am 100 percent ready. Whether we box or stand there and punch, it does not matter.
Question: You have said you would wait to see how the fight develops before committing, but is there a chance you will come out aggressively and not wait to see and counter?
Cotto: First, I have to wait and see what is going to happen. We do have some thoughts on it, but it is always up to what happens in the ring before you decide anything.
Quintana: It all depends on how the fight goes. We will be ready for either way and we are going to be ready to box or fight. It does not matter which way he comes. We will be ready for it.
Question: Miguel, you are coming up in weight class for the first time. What makes you go after someone (like Quintana in a world title fight) rather than take a tune-up first?
Cotto: My whole career has been about facing these kinds of challenges. I think throughout my career, one of my first early fights was against a world champion. A lot of people did not expect me to beat him, but I did. From then, my career has been like that. I expect challenges. If I did not think I was capable of winning this fight, I would not be here. I know that I am ready for it and that I am capable of winning the fight. So to me, it is just another great challenge of my career.
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