In the week leading up to the fight, Cotto's trainer, Freddie Roach, said his pupil would be able to use his footwork to control the fight, and still possessed power even though he moved up in weight class.
Cotto proved Roach right from the opening bell, knocking down Martinez twice in the first round with a flurry of body shots. As the fight progressed, Cotto pressured Martinez around the ring, and attacked when openings were presented.
Martinez forced Cotto to fight in the middle of the ring instead of on the ropes or in the corners. But Cotto was able to land a variety of jabs and hooks. By the end of the eighth round, Martinez had swelling around his right eye.
The Cotto-Martinez fight was the main event of a nine-fight card.