As predicted earlier, welterweight champion Miguel Cotto would walk away victorious if Zab Judah did not bring his A-game and fight the "perfect fight," namely, outbox the champ, use his superior hand speed, and move around. I also insinuated that Kostya Tszyu was still haunting him all these years later, and well, that may have truly been a factor two Saturdays ago.
Judah started off well in the beginning rounds, rocking Cotto twice, but from about Round 3 or 4, and on, it was the champ's fight. "(Not-so) Super" Zab was trying too hard to land the money shot, waiting extended periods of time and missing prime opportunities to at least score some blows, while Cotto did what he does best--coming forward and grind his opponents down with body shots and persistent pressure. Judah barely threw any sort of punches for much of the fight and failed to utilize his talents to make it a more even-sided affair. Cotto, on the other hand, was game and mauled the Brooklyn native to an 11th round stoppage (not quite "mid-fight"...).
It definitely was not a classic or a "Fight of the Year" candidate that some were making it out to be (too one-sided and not as thrilling as other bouts earlier in the year) and Zab Judah surely didn't "prove/vindicate himself" with his performance. I don't want to sound too harsh, but truthfully, while he didn't meltdown like he usually does and managed to fire off some flurries in the latter rounds, he looked like someone trying to land the big KO and hesitant to make much of a fight beyond that. Perhaps that Tszyu KO was making him reluctant once again to go full out and engage a potential repeat danger like Cotto, and perhaps he just wants to create an impressive moment to mark his first victory in two years.
After that fight, I cannot see why that stretch would not reach past three.
P.S.: Those hideous low blows from Cotto and that headbutt may have taken the wind a bit out of him, but the outcome would have stayed the same, regardless...Judah is most likely still going through what other fighters have gone through after a career-changing knockout loss like the one back in 2001...