It’s official. Boxing superstar Floyd “Money” Mayweather will return to the ring, step up in weight and challenge Four-Time, Three-Division World Champion Miguel Cotto for his WBA Super Welterweight World title in what will be an electrifying bout between two renowned ring kings. The event will take place on Saturday, May 5 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev. and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View®.
As if the clash between Mayweather and Cotto isn’t enough to satisfy boxing’s most loyal subjects, the addition of WBC Super Welterweight World Champion and rising Mexican sensation Canelo Alvarez against Six-Time World Champion Sugar Shane Mosley in a 12-round world championship contest should satisfy the entire sports kingdom.
“Ring Kings: Mayweather vs. Cotto,” which coincides with the Mexican holiday Cinco de Mayo, historically one of boxing’s most popular weekends, is presented by Mayweather Promotions, Golden Boy Promotions and Miguel Cotto Promotions. The mega-event is sponsored by Corona, DeWalt Tools and AT&T. Alvarez vs. Mosley is presented in association with Canelo Promotions and Sugar Shane Mosley Promotions.
Tickets are priced at $1,500, $1,250, $600, $300 and $200, not including applicable service charges, with a total ticket limit of twelve (12) per person. Ticket sales are limited to ten (10) per person at the $1,500, $1,250, $600 and $300 price levels with a ticket limit of two (2) per person at the $200 price level. To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Tickets also are available for purchase at www.mgmgrand.com or www.ticketmaster.com.
Mayweather, a seven-time world champion in five weight classes, is excited to be facing the heavier, much-tested Cotto, who is the pride of Puerto Rico and has the experience, heart and determination to give pound for pound king Mayweather the toughest fight of his career.
“Miguel Cotto is a world class fighter who can never be taken for lightly and continues to prove he is one of the best in boxing,” said Mayweather, whose only other fight at super welterweight came in a World Boxing Council (WBC) world title win over Oscar de la Hoya in May 2007. “It will be a challenge for me to compete with him at this weight, but this is the type of test I thrive on and gives me the motivation to train even harder. I have no doubt in my mind that my title belt collection will increase once again and Cotto’s reign as champion will come to an end on May 5.”
Cotto, coming off of the second defense of his title, a spectacular tenth-round technical knockout win over Antonio Margarito in December 2011, is ready to face Mayweather and believes he is Mayweather’s most competitive career challenge to date.
“I am here to fight the biggest names in boxing,” said Cotto who true to his warrior spirit that has distinguished his entire career has accepted this challenge to face the undefeated Mayweather. “I’ve never ducked anyone or any challenge in front of me. I have accepted everything to give the fans what they like…great and exciting fights. That is what the sport of boxing is all about; making the fights that the fans want and deserve to see. On May 5, stay tuned, because I will convincingly beat Floyd Mayweather.”
In addition to agreeing to the terms of the bout which will take place on Cinco de Mayo, one of boxing’s biggest weekends, both fighters have agreed to Olympic-style drug testing for the fight.
“Shane Mosley is very experienced and strong,” said Canelo Alvarez. “He knows how to move in the ring and remember, he did hurt Floyd Mayweather. Mosley is still highly respected and has done so much for this sport. I think he is an opponent that will give me a lot of experience, but I have youth on my side. That is my advantage. I am going for the victory which will continue my path into the boxing big leagues.”
“I’m excited to work with Golden Boy Promotions again and for this opportunity to fight Canelo,” said Mosley. “It’s going to be a big night for boxing fans around the world.”
“Floyd always asks us to find the best available competition for him to fight and we have found that in Miguel Cotto,” said Leonard Ellerbe, CEO, Mayweather Promotions. “This is a very risky fight for Floyd as Miguel is a solid 154-pound champion who has already proven to have great boxing abilities and to be a very competent and strong puncher. This is a big test for Floyd, but as always I believe, he is the superior fighter with unmatched skills. This will make the difference and lead to another Mayweather victory the night of May 5.”
“What we have here are two champions of amazing caliber set to meet in the ring on May 5 and give boxing and sports fan one of the most compelling match-ups in the sport’s history,” said Richard Schaefer, CEO, Golden Boy Promotions. “Floyd Mayweather has already achieved worldwide recognition as one of the best fighters ever and Miguel Cotto is one of the greatest fighters of this era. I commend both fighters for agreeing to the fight each other on one of the biggest weekends for boxing and also commend them for agreeing to participate in Olympic style drug testing, a precedent set by Floyd, which continues to uphold the integrity of the sport.”
Mark Taffet, Senior Vice President, HBO Pay-Per-View, said, “Boxing fans everywhere know that Mayweather vs. Cotto is a mega-fight and we’re thrilled to be able to present this high-stakes matchup on HBO Pay-Per-View. Floyd Mayweather is a major attraction and must-see TV while Miguel Cotto will bring a wealth of experience, skill and determination into the ring.”
Richard Sturm, president of Sports & Entertainment for MGM Resorts International, said, “The MGM Resorts family is thrilled to welcome the return of both Floyd Mayweather and Miguel Cotto to MGM Grand. These two superstars of the boxing world will bring their incredible strength, speed and skill to the ring, leaving fans electrified on May 5.”
The undefeated Mayweather, (42-0, 26 KO’s), a seven-time world champion in five weight divisions, remains boxing’s biggest attraction, wowing crowds and generating record pay-per-view numbers each time he steps into the ring. During his extraordinary career, he has amassed wins over world champions such as Diego Corrales, Jose Luis Castillo, Arturo Gatti, Zab Judah, Oscar de la Hoya, Ricky Hatton, Juan Manuel Marquez and Shane Mosley. His last fight against then WBC Welterweight World Champion Victor Ortiz on September 17, 2011 not only showed his boxing skills, as he took the younger Ortiz to school in the first three rounds before knocking him out in the fourth. The fight against Ortiz not only marked Mayweather’s forty-second win of his storied career, but once again showed his unbelievable drawing power as the fight generated 1.25 million pay-per-view buys making it the second-highest grossing non-heavyweight fight in history. He is also no stranger to appearing on the classic Mexican celebratory weekends such as Cinco de Mayo and Mexican Independence Day as his fight with Cotto will mark the fifth fight of his career to land on one of those weekends. Mayweather returns to face Cotto in an attempt to capture his eighth world championship.
Cotto (37-2, 30 KO’s), from Caguas, Puerto Rico, has held a world title every year since 2004 while winning 16 of the 18 world championship bouts in which he has fought. Puerto Rico’s most exciting fighter and one of its greatest of all time, Cotto held the World Boxing Organization (WBO) Junior Welterweight crown from 2004-2006, successfully defending it six times before vacating it to capture the WBA Welterweight title at the end of 2006, a title he held for nearly as long. After losing the WBA title to Antonio Margarito in July 2008, Cotto won his second welterweight belt in February 2009, knocking out Michael Jennings in the fifth round to become the WBO Welterweight champion. He lost the title in his second defense in November 2009, but captured the WBA Super Welterweight title in June of 2010 at Yankee Stadium in New York by stopping then-undefeated defending champion Yuri Foreman. Cotto successfully defended that title by stopping Two-Division World Champion Ricardo Mayorga in the 12th round in March of 2011 and, in his last fight, finally avenged his loss to Margarito, once again retaining his title and giving him true peace of mind.
Mexico’s latest boxing superhero, Canelo Alvarez (39-0-1, 29 KO’s) has captivated a nation despite being only 21 years old. Known not only for his ferocious and fan-friendly style in the ring, but also for his red hair, freckles and charisma, Guadalajara’s Alvarez is a unique fighter in that he has been able to crossover and gain popularity with demographics which prizefighters rarely do. A pro since 2005 when he was just 15 years-old, Alvarez tore through local competition in Mexico, with his only blemish being a four round draw with Jorge Juarez in his fifth fight. Since then, no one has come close to beating Canelo, with the WBA Fedecentro, NABF, WBC Youth, and WBO Latino title belts all filling his trophy case as he rose up the welterweight ladder. In 2010, Alvarez made his move on the world scene, going 5-0 with victories over the likes of Jose Miguel Cotto, Luciano Cuello, Carlos Baldomir, and Lovemore N’dou and in 2011 he took home his first world title. In March of last year, Alvarez decisioned Matthew Hatton for the vacant WBC super welterweight world championship and then went on to defend his belt with knockouts of Ryan Rhodes, Alfonso Gomez, and Kermit Cintron in front of packed houses from California to his native Mexico. On May 5, Alvarez will face his most significant opponent yet in Sugar Shane Mosley.
One of the most revered boxers of this era, and a sure-fire first ballot Hall of Famer, Sugar Shane Mosley (46-7-1, 39 KO’s) has defined the word “fighter” for nearly two decades. A stellar amateur who just missed out on the 1992 Olympics, Pomona, California’s Mosley nonetheless went on to strike gold as a professional, winning his first world title at lightweight in 1997. Defending his belt eight times before moving directly up to welterweight, Mosley stunned the world in 2000 by defeating Oscar de la Hoya for the 147-pound title. The victory put Mosley at the top of the pound-for-pound list, a position he would hold until losing his belt to Vernon Forrest in 2002. In 2003, Mosley had captured another divisional title, this time at 154 pounds, by defeating De La Hoya again, but his amazing journey was just beginning. From 2005 to 2011, Mosley was a regular in boxing’s biggest super-fights, taking on the likes of Fernando Vargas (twice), Miguel Cotto, Ricardo Mayorga, Antonio Margarito, Floyd Mayweather, and Manny Pacquiao. It’s a record few, if any, can touch, but on May 5, the 40-year old warrior will look to make history once again by defeating Canelo Alvarez to win his seventh world title.
The MGM Grand Garden Arena is home to concerts, championship boxing and premier sporting and special events. The Arena offers comfortable seating for as many as 16,800 with excellent sightlines and state-of-the-art acoustics, lighting and sound. Prominent events to date have included world championship fights between Evander Holyfield and Mike Tyson, Oscar de la Hoya and Floyd Mayweather and George Foreman and Michael Moorer, as well as concerts by The Rolling Stones, Madonna, Elton John, Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney, Bette Midler, George Strait, Janet Jackson, Phil Collins, Billy Joel, U2, ‘N Sync, Sting, Coldplay, Alicia Keys, Jimmy Buffett and the Barbra Streisand Millennium Concert. The MGM Grand Garden Arena also is home to the annual Academy of Country Music Awards and the Frozen Fury NHL pre-season game which features the Los Angeles Kings vs. Colorado Avalanche.
TheMayweather vs. Cotto world championship telecast, which begins at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT, will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View and will be available to more than 92 million pay-per-view homes. The telecast will be available in HD-TV for those viewers who can receive HD. HBO Pay-Per-View, a division of Home Box Office, Inc., is the leading supplier of event programming to the pay-per-view industry. For Mayweather vs. Cotto fight week updates, log on to www.hbo.com.
For more information, visit www.floydmayweather.com and www.goldenboypromotions.com, www.mgmgrand.com, follow on Twitter at @floydmayweather, @RealMiguelCotto, @CaneloOficial, @sugarshanem, @mayweatherpromo, @goldenboyboxing, @mgmgrand or become a fan on Facebook at www.facebook.com/FloydMayweather, www.facebook.com/Mayweatherpromotions, www.facebook.com/GoldenBoyBoxing. Follow HBO Boxing news at www.hbo.com/boxing, Facebook at www.facebook.com/hboboxing and on Twitter @hboboxing.