Miguel Cotto is such a heavy favorite in his upcoming fight that much of the talk surrounding the boxer has been whom he will take on following Saturday’s bout. But he must first get passed Daniel Geale, whom he will square off against on Saturday night at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
The middleweight champ has been expected to win the match since the bout was agreed upon in April, and his betting odds have increased in the last week. After being a -600 favorite on Monday, Cotto’s odds have shifted to -750 on the day before the fight at Bovada.lv. Geale’s odds have gone from +400 to +475.
"I'm going to have to go out there and be very convincing, because I'll have everything up against me," Geale said.
"But I've been in these positions before so I know what I have to do."
While the middleweight belt is usually defended at 160 pounds, Cotto and Geale agreed to fight at a catch weight of 157 pounds. Having also fought at light welterweight, welterweight and light middleweight, the smaller Cotto asked for his belt to be defended at a lighter weight than usual. Geale, who’s been at middleweight for the majority of his career, weighed in at 167.5 pounds a week before the fight.
"I have a personal problem with catch weights. We accepted the catch weight of 157 and I'm not here to complain about the catchweight," Gary Shaw, Geale's promoter, said. "We're going to make the weight. It's going to be tough. I believe that if a fighter wants to fight at any weight that he wants to fight at, he has that opportunity. But he shouldn't stop the opponent from fighting at the sanctioned weight, which in this case is 160."
Geale defeated Jarrod Fletcher in December, following a third-round knockout loss to Gennady Golovkin last July. Cotto has won two consecutive fights, stopping Delvin Rodriguez and Sergio Martinez in the third and 10th rounds, respectively.
It’s been a year since Cotto last stepped in the ring, as he looks to put on an impressive performance and earn another big pay-per-view fight. A victory is expected to result in a fight against burgeoning Mexican star Canelo Alvarez.
It will be the first time Cotto has ever fought at Barclays Center, but he should have the backing of most of the crowd. Cotto is of Puerto Rican descent, and there is a large Puerto Rican community in the New York area. Eight of his last 14 fights have been in New York City.
Geale fought Golovkin at Madison Square Garden, and London-born Darren Barker in Atlantic City, and both were losses for the Australian. He was victorious in his two fights in Germany, against highly regarded Felix Sturm and Sebastian Sylvester. The rest of Geale's bouts were in Australia, where he owns a 29-1 record.
Betting Odds: Cotto-750, Geale+475
Start Time: 10:30 p.m. ET
TV Channel: HBO