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Gervonta Davis to defend 130-pound title against Abner Mares on Feb. 9 on Showtime

Abner Mares
19
Dec

Abner Mares is looking to make history.

He’ll look to become the third Mexico native in boxing history to claim titles in four weight classes with a daunting assignment: a February 9 clash against junior lightweight titleholder Gervonta Davis.

The 130-pound title tilt, set to headline a Showtime Championship Boxing card, will be staged at StubHub Center in Carson, California. The outdoor venue was the site of Mares’ worst-career performance: a shocking first-round stoppage loss to Jhonny Gonzalez in 2013. Mares also competed at StubHub Center last year when he claimed a victory over Andres Gutierrez.

Mares (31-3-1, 15 knockouts) was defeated by Leo Santa Cruz for a second time this summer in another close featherweight fight. Now, rather than look for a rebound bout, the 33-year-old will debut at 130 pounds against the division’s top fighter.

“I wanted this fight and I want this challenge against Gervonta Davis,” said Mares. “I’m preparing well and I will add my fifth world title in my fourth weight class on February 9 on Showtime.”

The other two Mexicans to capture titles in four divisions: Juan Manuel Marquez and Erik Morales. Jorge Arce also accomplished the feat, but with an asterisk: he won the interim title at 108 pounds in 2001 and was later elevated.

For the first time in his career, Mares will be a decided underdog. Davis is just 24 years old, and he’s already displayed his immense power against world-class opposition. He’ll be the far bigger, fresher man, but Davis has been plagued by inactivity.

The Baltimore native scored a third-round stoppage of Jesus Cuellar in April before he later ballooned in weight. He also was arrested for an altercation outside a D.C. nightclub over the summer.

Out-of-the-ring issues aside, Tank’s talent is apparent. His career-best victory was a knockout of Jose Pedraza in January 2017. Mares presents a sterner challenge.

“I’m very excited to be showcased in my first main event in the United States on February 9,” said Davis (20-0, 19 KOs). “I want to make a statement in this fight by putting on a tremendous performance against an experienced world champion like Abner Mares.

“I plan on showing everyone why I belong in pound-for-pound discussions and why I’m the most exciting champion in boxing today.”

Mike Coppinger is the Senior Writer for RingTV.com. Follow him on Twitter: @MikeCoppinger

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