Meeting at a maximum weight of 159 pounds, the 5-foot-7 Cotto (38-4, 31 KOs) will sacrifice size against the 5-foot-10 Martinez.
Also a past professional cyclist and soccer player, Martinez has been shelved since physically deteriorating in April 2013 versus tough Englishman Martin Murray.
Martinez, who controversially outscored the 31-year-old Murray (25-1-1, 11 KOs) by three counts of 115-112, sustained another right knee wound, broken left hand, and bad cut over his left eye during the bout.
"The judges are not going to have to do much work because this fight is not going the distance," said Martinez, 39, who first suffered a torn right meniscus against Julio César Chávez Jr. in September 2012.
Conversely, in a virtually flawless outing, the 33-year-old Cotto earned a third round TKO over Delvin Rodríguez on October 5 at the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida.
A four-time world titlist in three weight divisions, Cotto’s paired with Freddie Roach and the duo focused on throwing more left hooks to the body versus the 34-year-old Rodríguez (28-7-3, 16 KOs).
Accordingly, the Puerto Rican icon landed 29 of his 55 blows to Rodriguez’s torso and dominated.
"We're going to win this fight," said Cotto, 33, who is 17-4 in championship matches. "I know what I'm capable of. I don't worry about his style. I worry about myself. I train for 12 rounds. I train for 12 hard rounds. I train for war."
Ultimately, despite battering Rodriguez, Cotto’s a bit shopworn and Martinez is graying and no longer the powerhouse that captured the 2010 “Fighter of the Year” award.
Nevertheless, Martinez’s southpaw “style” and blazing speed should make Cotto “worry.”
In an entertaining bloodbath, expect Sergio Martinez to prevent Miguel Cotto from “going the distance” roughly two weeks from tonight at The World’s Most Famous Arena in Gotham.