The manager of Abner Mares has confirmed an earlier report that the three-division titlewinner suffered a rib injury on Sunday which has led to the postponement of his requested Feb. 15 rematch with Jhonny Gonzalez, against whom Mares suffered a shocking first-round knockout loss that dethroned him as WBC featherweight titleholder in August.
Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer could not be reached for an immediate comment regarding the Gonzalez-Mares rematch, which was to headline a Showtime-televised card at Staples Center in Los Angeles. But Mares' manager Frank Espinoza said that Schaefer has been informed of the situation.
"I spoke to Abner yesterday, and the injury happened in Mexico City. I don't know when the proposed next date is or whatever. I tried to reach out to Richard Schaefer, and it went to voice mail," said Espinoza.
"But Richard did call me back, and we did have a conversation regarding Abner. I just got off of the phone with him, but their offices are closed until next week, so that's when we'll come up with a new date." [Editor's note: Lem Satterfield will have a item with Schaefer's comments on the situation later tonight.]
Gonzalez (55-8, 47 knockouts) had appeared to be balking at the rematch clause of their first bout before eventually agreeing to the return bout with Mares (26-1-1, 14 KOs).
A 27-year-old who entered the Gonzalez bout as THE RING's No. 5-rated pound-for-pound fighter, Mares was floored twice by Mexican veteran during the first defense of the belt he won in his 126-pound debut, a ninth-round knockout of Daniel Ponce de Leon.
Ponce de Leon was the last man to defeat Gonzalez in an eighth-round technical decision in September of 2012, that ended Gonzalez's 12-fight winning streak which included 11 knockouts.
Mares was similarly injured in June of 2012, when rib damage led to his turning down a proposed clash with rising bantamweight Christian Esquival of Mexico that was intended for August of in Mares' native Guadalajara, Mexico, Mares' manager.
A resident of Montebello, Calif., Mares was coming off a unanimous decision over former beltholder Eric Morel in April before his scheduled bout with Esquival was called off.
Photo / Naoki Fukuda
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org