New York—Miguel Cotto (39-4, 32 KO’s), the WBC Middleweight Champion, will be in New York City on June 6 to defend his title against a two-time former champion Daniel Gaele (31-3, 16 KO’s) at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
The native of Caguas, Puerto Rico is no stranger to a boxing ring in New York City. The June title encounter will be Cotto’s12th bout in New York, 10 at Madison Square Garden, one at Yankee Stadium and one earlier in his career at the Hammerstein Ballroom. He will be boxing for the first time at Barclays. He will also be fighting under new representation, Roc Nation Sports in association with his own Miguel Cotto Promotions.
Representatives of Roc Nation, HBO and Barclays also spoke. Michael Yormark of Roc Nation explained that the promotion only began in boxing in August of 2014, but to take the next big step to change the boxing industry.” His brother Brett of Barclays, in an effort to take the event affordable to the general public, is pricing the event from $25 to $500. It will also be televised on HBO.
Cotto, a favorite of the large Puerto Rican population in New York, is a regular visitor in June. The 6th will be his seventh bout in June in the city. He tries to time his bouts here in conjunction with the National Puerto Rican Parade held that month. Cotto remarked of the upcoming fight, “I’m looking forward to seeing all the Puerto Rican fans on June 6 and to being part of another exciting boxing night in Brooklyn.”
A press conference promoting the bout was held at Jay Z’s 40-40 Club on 25th Street in Manhattan on Thursday. Unlike many boxing press conferences where the combatants “talk trash” and show, whether real or not, intense dislike and disrespect for their opponents, the two on Thursday conducted themselves gentlemanly and spoke well of their opponent. Cotto commented, “I’m going to do my best as always to make a beautiful fight.” Gaele, realizing he is the underdog, explained, “I’m going to train my butt off for this to bring another title back to Australia.”
Although Cotto was born in Caguas, Puerto Rico and Gaele thousands of miles distant in Australia, the two champion boxers have much in common. Both were born 34 years ago; both had outstanding amateur careers and both represented their native lands in the 2000 Summer Olympics.
Both have also reached the heights in their pro careers by having won several championships, yet they are not considered as equals in their profession. Cotto will be defending two respected championship belts, the WBC Middleweight title and the Ring Magazine Middleweight Championship. He won both last June at Madison Square Garden by defeating Sergio Martinez.
Cotto, a future Hall of Fame boxer, is one of the very few and the only Puerto Rican boxer to have won championships in four weight classes. Among his legendary bouts were 12 round encounters with Manny Pacquaio and Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. When asked about their highly anticipated bout in May, Cotto noncommittally replied, “That’s a tough one.”