By Manuel Perez: Highly ranked Middleweight contender David Lemieux (38-3, 33 KOs) will be fighting on December 2 on HBO, and it potentially be against Miguel Cotto (41-5, 33 KOs). Lemieux will fight on that date on HBO. What we don’t know is if it’ll be against Cotto or not.
Cotto’s options for the December 2 fight are from these 3 guys:
• Saul Canelo Alvarez
• Gennady Golovkin
• David Lemieux
Cotto prefers a more lucrative fight against Saul Canelo Alvarez or Gennady Golovkin. Those 2 are still negotiating the rematch between them. The only way one of them will be available to fight Cotto in December is if the rematch talks stall. Golden Boy wants Golovkin to stay out of the ring until he faces Alvarez in a rematch next year. That would be a winner potentially if GGG can get a better slice of the revenue for the rematch with Alvarez.
If Golden Boy is offering Gennady the same deal as last time for their September 16 fight, then it’s better for him to fight Cotto in December and then Alvarez in May or September next year. Cotto would only be an option for Alvarez or Triple G if their negotiations don’t result in a fight scheduled for May next year.
Cotto will be putting a wrap to his career on December against whoever he faces, but it may not be against Lemieux. HBO would obviously be happy if Cotto fights Lemieux, but they can’t force the Puerto Rican fighter to take that fight if he doesn’t want to fight him.
Cotto beat Yoshihiro Kamegai in his last fight on August 26. Cotto won the fight by a 12 round unanimous decision to win the vacant WBO junior middleweight title.
Lemieux has fought 2 times in 2017 in beating Curtis Stevens and Marcos Reyes. Lemieux is a dangerous fight for Cotto because of his punching power. It’s not a fight that would be easy for Cotto, because he’s smaller, weaker and older than the Canadian fighter. The money isn’t as good for Cotto to fight Lemieux. There’s a higher risk for Cotto to wind up knocked out in a bad manner by Lemieux. Golovkin knocks guys out, but he doesn’t do it in the same way by knocking them unconscious with a single punch.
That’s Lemieux’s style. He hits so hard that he knocks his opponents clean out. Cotto would probably be looking to weaken Lemieux enough to beat him by making him agree to a catch-weight and possibly even a rehydration clause before he signs a contract to fight him. Either of those things would be put Lemieux in a position where he could lose and hurt his career. It doesn’t hurt Cotto’s career if he gets beaten by Lemieux, because he’s retiring after the fight. But with Lemieux, he plans on staying active and fighting for a long time yet before he eventually retires.