In a battle of former title holders, former bantamweight, super bantamweight and featherweight champion, Abner Mares (27-1-1 with 14 KOs) continues his comeback effort after his shocking 1st round TKO loss to Jhonny Gonzalez in August of 2013. After hiring Virgil Hunter before his uninspired 10 round decision victory over Jonathan Oquendo, Mares has returned to Clemente Medina as his trainer. Former WBO Featherweight Champion, Jose Carlos Ramirez (24-3-2 with 15 KOs) is only 3-2 in his last five fights, but one of those victories was a quality split decision victory over Rey Bautista.
Round One: Mares puts Ramirez down inside the first minute with two left hooks to the body. The ropes held Ramirez up, but he gets up quickly and appears unhurt. Ramirez lets his hands go and the two fighters exchange a series of blows. Mares is landing the cleaner blows. Ramirez is landing some punches, but is throwing too wide to score with any regularity. An accidental head butt causes a small cut over Ramirez’s eye. Ramirez closes the round competitively if not efficiently.
Round Two: Mares may have felt some power from Ramirez in the last round, as he starts the second with more caution. Both fighters are busy. Ramirez gets the best of the first exchange. Mares appears to wince twice. Mares is landing as well. He has thus far abandoned the jab. They are not boxing, they are scrapping. Mares closes strong with hard accurate shots and likely takes what was a close round in the first two minutes.
Round Three: Both fighters sitting down in the pocket and banging. Mares is landing the better looking blows, but Ramirez is taking them well. Mares does serious work in the last minute and scores a second knockdown as referee, Jack Reiss rules the ropes held Ramirez up. Ramirez looked more stung than hurt.
Round Four: Ramirez comes out swinging and Mares returns. Mares landing “crowd goes ooh” shots with great regularity, but Ramirez is taking them well. Mares’ hand speed and accuracy are starting to separate the two even further. Ramirez takes a quick knee due to another hard shot to the body. Reiss does not rule it a knockdown. Mares closes with a flurry. Despite no knockdown, this may have been Mares’ best round.
Round Five: Ramirez keeps coming forward and eating a variety of punches. Mares is starting to land at will. Ramirez keeps coming. A huge left hook by Mares puts Ramirez on his can. Ramirez beats the count and clearly spits his mouthpiece out to gain more time. Jack Reiss takes away an additional point. Mares’ left hook keeps finding a home. Ramirez gets staggered again. Mares is teeing off now.
Ramirez’s corner stops the fight before round six begins. This was an excellent all action fight. While Mares certainly outclassed his opponent, the number of punches Ramirez was able to land despite being more wild could be a concern for Mares’ camp going forward. Still, a very entertaining victory by Mares that will quite likely lead to a title fight for the talented Mexican fighter.