Undefeated Abner Mares put on an impressive performance on April 21, securing the vacant WBC super bantamweight title with his unanimous decision over Eric Morel, at the Don Haskins Convention Center in El Paso, TX. With the win, Mares improved his professional boxing record to 24-0-1, while Morel suffered his third loss.
For Mares, going against a seasoned veteran like Morel was a huge test, but the 26 year old Mexican boxer passed in flying colors, establishing himself as the better fighter in the very first round.
From start to finish, the 36 year old Morel simply didn't have enough pep in his step to keep with the younger Abner Mares, who proved to be the faster, more durable boxer.
Mares was obviously happy with his performance, but he remained classy after the win, showing a lot of respect for the aging Morel.
"Eric is a tough fighter, but I felt strong," Mares said after the bout. "I kept saying to my corner, 'One of these overhand rights, he's going down.' He took my power and went out like a champ. … I always say that I'd rather give fans 12 great rounds than a 1st or 2nd round knockout."
Even though some might say that Morel's age had a lot to do with the result of the fight, I personally thought Mares was simply the better boxer. His jab was very efficient against Morel, and his defense turned out to be a little better than I expected.
Morel was also impressed with Mares' performance inside the ring, and he gave the new WBC super bantamweight champ his blessings after the fight.
"The time [age] really doesn't matter," Morel said. "He probably would've done the same thing. He's a great fighter. He's one of the best I've ever fought - nothing to be ashamed of. … He was better, I said it before - he has his goals, I have mine. I don't think [it's the end of my career]. I might stick around. I might drop down to 118. Mares is just a great fighter. A lot of fighters are going to have a lot of problems with him."
With his win against Morel, Mares certainly has a lot of options available to him, but I for one would love to see him square up against Filipino sensation Nonito Donaire sometime in the near future. They're both young and skilled. And a fight between the two should be very entertaining.
Jake Donovan, "Abner Mares Sends a Warning Shot To The Elite of 122"
David is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and boxing practitioner who has watched and studied MMA for the past 9 years. Send him your questions @davidkingwriter.