NEW YORK -- Hagler-Hearns: That's what promoter Bob Arum compared the level of heat and dislike on display between Miguel Cotto and Antonio Margarito to at the final presser before the fighters' Saturday rematch at Madison Square Garden. There was no final faceoff between the boxers at the end of the press conference, despite it being customary, because, Arum explained, why risk an early skirmish?
Now, would there have been a faceoff if the arena wasn't 300 seats from a sellout? I speculate, but I'd guess yes.
I asked Arum, who promoted Hagler, why Marvin hated Hearns, who was no villain sort -- not anything like the dimpled alleged "criminal" Margarito. "Who the f--- knows?" Arum answered.
Top Rank vice president Carl Moretti recalled two other occasions when obvious enmity cancelled a faceoff: before Lennox Lewis-Mike Tyson and before Oscar De La Hoya-Fernando Vargas.
"Why risk it? There was no need," Moretti said after Cotto and Margarito went their separate ways.