New York’s Madison Square Garden will host a WBA Light Middleweight Title bout on December 1st as champion Austin Trout defends his belt against Puerto Rican superstar Miguel Cotto. Despite a glut of belts by the whores at the WBA (Mayweather owns a belt in the same weight class), this is an interesting fight because it is a huge step up in competition for Trout, who is undefeated at 25-0 and starting to make waves in a crowded weight class. The books haven’t put lines out yet, but it will almost certainly have Cotto as a favorite.
Cotto has been fighting the very elite of the sport for many years, and he has established himself as one of the best. Austin Trout has no one on his resume that is even close to Cotto in level.
Trout deserves credit for stepping up, and the boxing world is going to find out a lot about Trout in a hurry. Trout won his belt as a 3-1 favorite, and he has been the favorite in his fights for the last few outings. But he is going to have to prove he is more than a regional fighter from the southwest.
Cotto is home in New York City, where the sizeable Puerto Rican community has made him a lot of money. Trout will be fighting in the lion’s den against a fighter who has proved he still has a lot in the tank in his last few outings. Coming off a 12 round decision loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr, Cotto is going to have to win this fight in order to retain his spot at the top of boxing’s marquee.
Should Trout pull off the victory, we will be betting on him for years to come, as at 36 this victory would catapult him into the upper echelons. Trout will have ample motivation as the big time awaits.
But an early line that has Cotto favored will be something to watch. Cotto is likely not ready to cede his position at age 31. I look for the line to grow in Cotto’s favor as the fight approaches and his audience weighs in. We will see if Trout brings any betting clout, if you are looking to bet the dog, you may be best off waiting for the fight to get closer and for the line to spread.