Austin "No Doubt" Trout controlled the fight early and roughed up Miguel Cotto late to win a 12-round unanimous decision and retain his share of the 154-pound WBA title Saturday at the Garden.
Trout (26-0) left Cotto's battered face red and swollen after cranking up the pressure over the final two rounds to truly take control on the scorecards. Cotto (37-4) lost his second straight fight after dropping a piece of the 154-pound title to Floyd Mayweather Jr. in May.
Cotto had long ruled as the undisputed champion of the New York fight scene, winning all seven of his fights at the Garden, plus one at Yankee Stadium.
Trout never wavered even as the crowd was against him from the start. Two judges scored the bout 117-111 and the third had it 119-109.
Trout delivered in easily the biggest and most high-profile fight of his career. The 2004 U.S. Olympic alternate ground out a championship reign in Texas and New Mexico and was a relative unknown on the national scene.
No doubt, that has changed.
"I've been preparing for this fight my entire life," he said. "Fighting someone like Miguel Cotto is a dream come true for someone like me waiting for their big moment. I had to show him I was the biggest guy and push him back a couple of times. I kept pushing him back to show he had no advantage there."
Trout swung the scorecards his way with stiff punches to the head and relentless jabs that shook Cotto.
Cotto, a four-time world champion, stormed out of the ring after the 12th and tersely asked who the fans thought won the bout. But this bout was no popularity contest. The 32-year-old Cotto refused to say if he'd fight again. "I'll go back to Puerto Rico and think," he said.