Typically, when the loaded welterweight division is spoken of, the only names at the center of the talks are Antonio Margarito and Miguel Cotto.
If that conversation happens to evolve, talks may then gravitate toward rising star Andre Berto, Shane Mosley, or possibly the now retired Floyd Mayweather jr.
Rarely do those conversations shift to a man many view as the divisions ‘silent assassin’. That man would be none other than Ghanaian native Joshua Clottey.
The most telling thing about Clottey is that he’s been a formidable force in the sport for 13 years, yet his resume list only a few recognizable names.
Back in 2006, Mexican ‘ironman’ Antonio Margarito and his handlers decided to give Clottey a chance, and within those 12 hard fought rounds, they quickly learned why many put him in that ‘high risk – low reward’ bracket.
Had it not been for a badly injured hand that forced him to stop throwing it, Clottey would have defeated a man that few in the sport cared to face. Despite the loss, Clottey earned more respect from fight fans who didn’t previously know him that night than he had at any point prior in his career.
To date, aside from Margarito, only two other top ten welterweights (Zab Judah and the late Diego Corrales – RIP) would enter the ring with him, and like those prior to them, he presented more questions than either man could provide answers to.
That string of luck which has prevented him from landing a top ten welter could soon come to an end as Clottey is scheduled to face the heavy-fisted Puerto Rican puncher, Kermit Cintron, on the undercard of the PPV twin-card featuring the return of both Kelly Pavlik and Miguel Cotto, which takes place Feburary 21.
Cintron has also failed to land himself in the welterweight divisions ‘basket’ of relativity, but a victory in this fight for either man will undoubtedly lead to greener pastures.
As of now, Clottey is merely a careless whisper, but by years end, his plan is to become a deafening roar.
His mission starts on the evening of February 21.
Credit: Vivek Wallace