Lights, Camera, Action!


Miguel Cotto and Yoshihiro Kamegai battle for vacant WBO junior middleweight crown Aug. 26

Somewhat lost in the hype of the Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor matchup Saturday Aug. 26 is Golden Boy Promotion’s WBO junior middleweight clash between 37-year-old Miguel Cotto (40-5-0, 33 KOs) and 35-year-old Yoshihiro Kamegai (27-3-2, 24 KOs).

“We are extremely happy and thrilled that Miguel Cotto will fighting for the WBO world title at the StubHub Center,” Golden Boy Promotions CEO Oscar De La Hoya said in a press release. “Cotto has been and is an amazing champion in the sport of boxing. He is Puerto Rico’s first four-division champion. He will be fighting against someone who is exciting to watch and has been in several Fight-of-the-Year candidates, one against Jesus Soto Karass.”

All the action takes place Saturday evening Aug. 26 at the Stubhub Center in Carson, California.

Cotto – a four-division world champion – is trying to return to the win column after losing a decision to Canelo Alvarez back in November 2015. Negotiations between Cotto and Juan Manuel Marquez broke down in 2016 and a signed fight with James Kirkland was cancelled when Kirkland fractured his nose during training.

Miguel Cotto
Photo Credit: Tom Hogan – Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions

“We had a really good training camp, a little longer than usual,” said Cotto’s trainer Freddie Roach in a press release. “He had a little bit of layoff previously, but camp went well. We watched a lot of film on our opponent. We have a really great strategy, and it will be an action packed fight. Miguel is 100 per cent ready. It was the best training camp we’ve had yet. We’ll see you Saturday.”

“It’s a pleasure for me to be here. We’ve been enjoying every session at the gym,” added Cotto, a Puerto Rico native. “I’ve been doing my work as hard as I can. We’re ready. We are ready for the fight, and I’m happy to be back. Thank you everyone for being here. We’re going to do our best this Saturday, and the winners will be fans all over the world.”

Kamegai comes into the bout on a three-fight win streak rematching and stopping Jesus Soto Karass in September 2016.

Yoshihiro Kamegai
Yoshihiro Kamegai at the pre-fight press conference. Photo Credit: Tom Hogan – Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions

“I’m extremely pleased to be fighting for the WBO title belt held by great champions like Oscar De La Hoya, Marco Antonio Barrera, and I’m looking forward to fighting a great legendary champion like Miguel Cotto,” Kamegai said.

Kamegai will be cornered by his trainer, Sendai Tanaka.

Yoshihiro Kamegai
From left: Rey Vargas, Miguel Cotto, Yoshihiro Kamegai, Ronny Rios. Photo Credit: Tom Hogan – Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions

The card also features a co-main event WBC super bantamweight title defence as Rey Vargas (29-0, 22 KOs) defends against Santa Ana’s Ronny Rios (28-1-0, 13 KOs).

The card will be broadcast live on HBO World Championship Boxing beginning at 9:45 p.m. ET.


Kenai is a former Postmedia Network online news and sports editor. He is the Editor-in-Chief for MMA Crossfire.

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