LOS ANGELES – Abner Mares will end a four-plus retirement when he takes on Miguel Flores on Sept. 4 at the Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles.
Mares will be making his 130-pound debut in a fight that will provide support for a FOX pay-per-view card headlined by a bout between Andy Ruiz Jr. and Luis Ortiz.
The former three-division champion Mares (31-3-1, 15 KOs) has not fought since suffering a unanimous decision loss in a rematch to Leo Santa Cruz in June 2018.
Mares was supposed to fight Gervonta Davis in Feb. 2019, but the fight was canceled when the former Mexican Olympian suffered a detached retina in his right eye.
Mares never got his in-ring career going after that, and instead, transitioned into a TV role as an analyst.
Now that the boxing bug has bitten him once again, Mares is looking to plant himself back into the big picture if he beats Flores (25-4, 12 KOs).
“I'm at no level of Shakur Stevenson, or Ryan Garcia. And that's just me being honest. I'm a 36-year-old man. Experienced? Yes. Accomplished? Yes. But it's been four years. I'm going to take it fight-by-fight. I'm doing this for fun right now. I'm not here to call out anyone,” Mares told BoxingScene.com in an interview.
“I'm looking at two-to-three more fights – if that. If I look good, I'm going to push for the Leo Santa Cruz trilogy. No one would say 'no' to that. Everybody will tune in because of the great fights we've given.”
Mares also suffered a majority decision loss to Santa Cruz in 2015.
His first career defeat came in a shocking first-round loss to Jhonny Gonzalez in 2013. Before that, Mares already had won crowns at 118 and 122 and beaten the likes of Vic Darchinyan, Anselmo Moreno, Joseph Agbeko, Yonnhy Perez, Eric Morel, and Daniel Ponce De Leon.
Mares said the ultimate goal is to put himself back into a position to fight Davis.
“It is [to fight Davis], but I just don't like talking about it because it takes time. It's a process. That's why I’m taking it fight by fight. I'm not calling out anyone. Let them do them. They have big fights coming up too,” said Mares.
“The key here against Flores is to look good and feel good.”
Manouk Akopyan is a sports journalist, writer and broadcast reporter. He’s also a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and MMA Journalists Association. He can be reached on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan, via email at manouk[dot]akopyan[at]gmail.com or on www.ManoukAkopyan.com.