Featherweight Fight Preview: Abner Mares vs Jhonny Gonzalez

This Saturday promises a mouth watering all Mexican clash when WBC featherweight champion Abner Mares defends his title against Jhonny Gonzalez

Abner Mares

By Niall Doran

Turning to the Staple Center in California Saturday night, what a potential barn storming contest we have on the cards when the all action WBC featherweight champion Abner Mares takes on fellow Mexican and big punching Jhonny Gonzalez. I think I can comfortably speak for most boxing fans when I say, I’m a little but excited about this one!

Mares has built up a passionate and loyal following in recent years and for good reason. The man is arguably one of the most exciting pound for pound fighters in the sport at the minute. His last fight against Ponce De Leon optimized that when Mares put an intensity and pressure on the massive punching De Leon could not withstand, and eventually succumbed to the furious fists of Mares in the 9th round. This time out Mares takes on another big puncher again who will also have a bit of an advantage in the height and reach department. Gonzalez comes into the fight in good form too with two wins on the spin, his last been an impressive 4th round TKO blitz back in April against Akihiko Katagiri.

The man with all the form it has to be said is Abner Mares. He comes into the fight as reigning and undefeated champion with an impressive record of 26-0-1, that includes notable scalps such as Vic Darchinyan, Joseph Agbeko, Anselmo Moreno and of course most recently Ponce De Leon. Form as they though goes out the window in boxing as soon as that first big punch lands, but as of yet Mares has showed no sign in such punches bothering him too much in all honesty.

Stylistically the fight should probably suit Mares who likes to have a real tear up. Gonzalez likes to come forward and throw bombs and I wouldn’t be surprised if he tries to take Mares’ head off early on and force the early stoppage, as I suspect he knows Mares is a man who gets stronger as a fight progresses. This could be a dangerous ploy if he does this however, given Mares’ willingness to meet fire with fire. Gonzalez to his credit is also noted as having decent boxing skills and can indeed be a smooth operator aswell as being a knockout merchant. Perhaps a strategy of using his boxing brain and trying to utilize his reach advantage would be a wiser tactic rather than trying to bomb Mares out early. In the fights that Mares has been put to the test in the past, often times it is clever boxers that can frustrate him.

This fight for me has all the ingredients for a potential fight of the year candidate. I think if you are looking to the man with the momentum you would have to lean towards a Mares victory and possibly within the distance. Having said that Gonzalez is an exceptionally spiteful puncher and will be well up for this clash against his fellow country man. Expect a blistering non stop pace with plenty of power punches been thrown and landed. For me I have to lean towards the champion and feel the fact he has moved up from super bantamweight to featherweight really suits him down to the ground and makes him a dangerous man for anyone in the division. Abner Mares by way of TKO for me in what could be an incredible all Mexican encounter.

Viva la Mexico!

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