Leo Santa Cruz and Abner Mares Win to Set Up Rematch

Leo Santa Cruz and Abner Mares Win to Set Up Rematch

Published October 14, 2017


CARSON, CALIF - World Boxing Association (WBA) featherweight champion Abner Mares (30-2-1, 15 KOs) set the tone for the evening with a dominant victory over Andres Gutierrez (35-1-1, 25 KOs) of Mexico. Mares started very aggressively,  landing combinations and power shots very effectively, opening a cut over the left eye of Gutierrez in the second round. 
Mares continued to press the attack using angles and level changes round after round to stay in control leaving Gutierrez searching for answers. 

Gutierrez continued to walk forward throughout the fight taking heavy punishment to his left eye which prompted referee Jack Reiss to step in and pause the action to have his eye examined by the ringside physician. The fight was stopped and they went to the scorecards.

Mares was awarded the unanimous decision victory in a fight he dominated from the start. 
Mares landed an astonishing 35% of his punches through ten rounds and looked very impressive coming off a layoff. 

Abner Mares wins in impressive fashion, dominating his opponent Andres Gutierrez in Carson. Photo credit: Kelly Owen/ Frontproof Media  

Abner Mares wins in impressive fashion, dominating his opponent Andres Gutierrez in Carson. Photo credit: Kelly Owen/ Frontproof Media  

After the fight Mares had this to say:

“I told everyone that I was here to make a statement. I had a tough opponent and he showed how good he is. It took a lot of punches and a lot of big punches. It was just a matter of time before I stopped him.

”I thought they could have stopped it earlier. He’s a young guy who was too brave for his own good. I was happy with the decision. I deserved the stoppage but I’m happy I got the win.

”I’m a totally different fighter now since I started working with Robert Garcia. We’re going to keep showing that when we fight Leo Santa Cruz.”

In the Main Event, World Boxing Association (WBA) super featherweight champion Leo Santa Cruz (31-1-1, 18 KOs) faced off with challenger Chris Avalos (27-5, 20 KOs) in front of a pro Santa Cruz crowd at the StubHub Center in Carson, California. 

Santa Cruz and Avalos started fast with little feeling out as both men are familiar with one another. Santa Cruz in familiar fashion started the fight throwing a high volume of punches, landing precisely and scoring to his opponents head and body. 

In the third round, both men started to sit down on their punches and trade in the center of the ring with Santa Cruz getting the better of the exchanges. 

In the fourth round, Avalos took an amazing amount of punishment and remained on his feet as Santa Cruz landed several clean right hands and body shots hurting Avalos several times before the bell. 

The middle rounds were much of the same as Santa Cruz continued to land punches in volume and Avalos trying to mount in between. 
In round eight, Avalos continued to take punishment as Santa Cruz landed a seven-punch combination which prompted referee Thomas Taylor to stop the fight at 1:34 of the eighth round. 

Leo Santa Cruz stops Chris Avalos in eight rounds at the StubHub Center in Carson, California. Photo credit: Kelly Owen / Frontproof Media

Leo Santa Cruz stops Chris Avalos in eight rounds at the StubHub Center in Carson, California. Photo credit: Kelly Owen / Frontproof Media

Leo Santa Cruz had this to say after the fight:

“He was very tough and I was fighting the wrong fight. I wanted to please the fans and give them a brawl. Once my dad told me how I could stop him easily, I boxed him more and got the stoppage.

”I thought I had him in the fourth round. I gassed out a little bit but I got my air back later. I thought the ref was going to jump in during that round but he let him continue.

”I want Abner Mares. I said if we both win, we’re going to fight. I’m ready to fight him in Los Angeles in the beginning of next year.”

Both Mares and Santa Cruz delivered impressive performances and the stage is now set for the highly anticipated rematch. 


(Feature Photo: Kelly Owen/ Frontproof Media )

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