The Tune Up: Santa Cruz & Mares Saturday PBC Doubleheader

In tomorrow night’s second Premier Boxing Champions double-header card, both Leo Santa Cruz and Abner Mares enter the ring at the StubHub Center, in Carson, California. However, they won’t be facing each other as originally anticipated. Instead, they’ll both be facing other lesser known opponents, in what is ostensibly a tune-up fight for both of them, before they square off in  early in 2018.

Leo Santa Cruz (33-1-1, 18 KOs) will defend his WBA Super Featherweight title against Chris Avalos (27-5, 20 KOs) of Lancaster, California and Abner Mares (30-2-1, 15 KOs) will defend is WBA World Featherweight title for the first time against Mexico’s Andres Gutierrez (35-1-1, 25 KOs). Neither Santa Cruz nor Mares can take either of their opponents lightly as both have considerable professional experience and knockout power.

One may want to know why both fighters took these tune-up fights, instead of just squaring off at the end of 2017. Apparently it was all driven by Leo Santa Cruz, who is considered the best featherweight in the division, after defeating Carl “The Jackal” Frampton in their much-anticipated rematch earlier this year. Originally, fight fans were told that Mares and Santa Cruz would mix it up in a rematch of their August 2015 fight on October 7th 2017. However Santa Cruz rained on the fans parade and asked for the fight to be postponed due to issues with the money split and Santa Cruz’s desire for the two to beat up designated victims in a doubleheader before squaring off with each other.

Santa Cruz has fought three times to Mares’ one since outslugging him in 2015, stopping Kiko Martinez before splitting a pair of majority decisions against Carl Frampton. Mares, meanwhile, became a world champion for the first time since 2013 last December with a split decision over Jesus Cuellar.

With the odds being heavily in favor of Mares and Santa Cruz, in part because they are both reigning title holders and also because the stakes and earning potential associated with a head-to-head fight between the two champs is so high, doesn’t see either fighter losing; unless of course, either fighter gets knocked out. If either fight goes to the distance, rest assured that both Mares and Leo Santa Cruz will win despite how close fans may think the fights are.

Tune in tomorrow night to Premier Boxing Champions on Fox at 7:30PM EST for the featherweight doubleheader and then head over to Showtime at 10PM EST for the junior middleweight tripleheader.

The are the type of nights that boxing fans dream of!!!!

Follow on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.