LOS ANGELES (May 19, 2010) – The four boxers -- three-time World Champion Israel Vazquez, two-division World Champion Rafael Marquez, International Boxing Federation (IBF) Bantamweight Champion Yonnhy Perez and top-rated contender Abner Mares – their promoters, managers and trainers participated Thursday in the final press conference at Conga Room at L.A. Live for Saturday’s highly anticipated Once And Four All fistic extravaganza at STAPLES Center on SHOWTIME®.
In the main event, Vazquez and Marquez will collide for a fourth time (Vazquez leads the epic series, 2-1). Perez will defend against Mares in a battle of unbeatens in what promises to be a spectacular co-feature.
Tickets, priced at $250, $125, $75, $50 and $25, are available at STAPLES Center Box Office, online at Ticketmaster.com andvia Ticketmaster charge-by-phone lines at (800) 745-3000.
The doubleheader, which isco-promoted by Golden Boy Promotions, Gary Shaw Productions, Espinoza Boxing Promotions and Zanfer Promotions and sponsored by Cerveza Tecate, will air live on SHOWTIME at 9 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast).
Doors open Saturday at 2:55 p.m. PT. The first live non-televised undercard bout begins at 3 p.m. PT.
Here is what the fighters and their camps said Wednesday:
“I am so excited and so ready, I just want Saturday to get here. It is the biggest day of my life. With this fight, Marquez and I will definitely be part of boxing history, even more so than now.
“My motivation to win is like none I have had before. Mentally and physically, I feel like a new man.
“If Marquez is saying he is going to knock me out, he is making a big mistake. I am going to win this fight, no doubt about it. I can’t say how, that’s a mystery. But whether it goes the distance or ends early, I will be the winner again.
“I want to thank everyone who helped make this fourth fight between us happen. It is going to be the greatest fight of the year. Don’t miss it!’’
“There are no words to say. There are no introductions to make. Everybody knows us.
“You are going to see a new, different Rafael Marquez on Saturday. I am extremely confident. My training camp was excellent. I think I am a better fighter than before. This is going to be a tremendous show.
“This fight is dedicated to all the fans in Mexico and everyone in attendance and watching on SHOWTIME who have always supported us.’’
“I am prepared and ready to go, as usual, and very anxious. I can’t wait for Saturday and wish it was today. This will be a tough fight but I don’t think it will be as tough as my last two.
“I have a great responsibility, more responsibility than ever, for this fight. Getting to and winning a title is one thing, keeping it and remaining champion is much harder.
“The IBF title belt doesn’t belong to me. It really belongs two my two kids, who I gave it to, and you can never take back what you give to your kids. It is in Los Angeles now, but only as a loan. After May 22, it is going back to them in Colombia.
“I will do most of my talking in the ring, but I do think conditioning will be a major factor in this fight. I know how hard and long I can go. Let’s see what he can do.’’
“We’re another day closer, which only makes me a little more nervous, but that’s a good thing. If I didn’t have butterflies, something would be wrong. The hardest part for me now is getting to Friday and making the weight.
“Yonnhy is a great friend, but on Saturday’s he’s going be like the best friend who stole your girlfriend. I’m going to take it to him.
“We know what Yonnhy is going to bring to the table. He’s a workhorse who comes straight ahead. But he is one-dimensional. I consider myself more of a complete fighter. I can slug but I’m also a slick boxer.
“I’ve waited my whole life for this opportunity and I am confident I will make the best of it.’’
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV