Freddie Roach was in the opposite corner of Miguel Cotto in November of 2009 working as trainer for Manny Pacquiao during the latter’s 12th-round knockout victory that dethroned Cotto as WBO welterweight beltholder.
The trio was together, yet again, recently at Roach’s Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood, Calif., only this time, they were all essentially on the same team.
Pacquiao made a surprise visit to the venue on Friday, where he offered encouragement to Cotto, who is being trained by Roach for the first time in preparation for his Oct. 5 junior middleweight bout with Delvin Rodriguez.
Roach will also work with Pacquiao in preparation for his welterweight matchup with rising junior welterweight Brandon Rios on Nov. 24 in Macau (Nov. 23 in the western hemisphere) in Macau, China.
“Good luck, Miguel, on your fight,” said Pacquiao, “and I hope you like working with coach Freddie like I do.”
Cotto was trained by Pedro Diaz for his past three bouts — losses to Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Austin Trout in May and December of last year, respectively, and a 10th-round knockout over Antonio Margarito in December of 2011.
“We’re just getting to know each other and so far so good,” said Roach, of his relationship with Cotto. “I think we can do some good things together.”
Top Rank publicist Ricardo Jiminez, who was on hand on Friday, said Cotto is the first boxer to train in the newest wing of Roach’s gym located on the building’s first floor.
“We only just began, but I feel comfortable here,” said Cotto, who will face Rodriguez on HBO at the Amway Center in Orlando, Fla. “I am looking forward to fighting in Orlando and want to give the fans a great fight.”
Note: Quotes were provided by Jiminez.
Photo by Chris Farina, Top Rank
Lem Satterfield can be reached at [email protected]