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Abner Mares at Staples on Nov. 10, wants Nonito Donaire next

October 02, 2012|By Lance Pugmire
  • Boxer Abner Mares stretches before a brief workout at the Westside Boxing Club in Los Angeles in 2011.
Boxer Abner Mares stretches before a brief workout at the Westside Boxing… (Genaro Molina / Los Angeles…)

Abner Mares has admired Robert Guerrero’s courage in standing up to his promoters for the title shot he wants.

World Boxing Council super-bantamweight champion Mares started to do the same Tuesday, making it clear that if he achieves his plan to break through the tight defense of Panama’s Anselmo Moreno on Nov. 10 at Staples Center, he wants Nonito Donaire next.

Mares is promoted by Los Angeles-based Golden Boy Promotions, and International Boxing Federation and World Boxing Organization champion Donaire (29-1, 18 knockouts) is promoted by rival Top Rank.

“I thought that’d be my fight now,” Hawaiian Gardens’ Mares (24-0-1, 13 knockouts) said, appearing at L.A. Live to promote his Showtime-televised main event against Moreno (33-1-1, 12 KOs).

The card, with tickets ($25 to $200) on sale now, includes a 154-pound fight between Mexico’s Alfredo Angulo and Raul Casarez and an IBF bantamweight title defense by the Southland’s Leo Santa Cruz.

“With Guerrero trying to open doors, I hope they can come together and make the fight,” Mares said, adding he’s a little mad at both promoters. “As a boxer and a boxing fan, they’re not working together to make the fights we and the fans want.

“Guerrero has said those things" to Golden Boy President Oscar De La Hoya, “how he doesn’t want just any fight, he wants the title. He wants Timothy Bradley. That’s good on his part. I want the unification. I want Donaire. He’s the guy I get compared to most. Let’s see who’s better.”

Top Rank Chairman Bob Arum said he could have an opponent for Palm Springs’ world welterweight champion Bradley by Wednesday, and doesn’t expect it to be Guerrero, due to the continued disagreements between the sides.

“Nothing these days can get done when Top Rank is involved,” De La Hoya said in a text message to The Times on Tuesday.

For Mares, the challenge of Moreno was seen as the best option possible, facing a 27-year-old defensive wizard who hasn’t been knocked down as a pro.

“Against his great footwork and defense, I’m excited to get in there and execute my plan and hit this guy the way I want to,” Mares said. “There’s no doubt this is the most technical, defensive fighter I’ve ever fought.

“His stance, his awkwardness is something I’m going to have to get ready for … to get in there and make him uncomfortable.”

By doing so on the stage of Staples -- Mares and Santa Cruz are Los Angeles’ lone world champions --  Mares believes victory leaves him with no opponent other than Donaire, who’ll defend his belts Oct. 13 at Home Depot Center in Carson against Japan’s Toshiaki Nishioka.

“The winner of my fight against the winner of Donaire’s, that’s the fight that should be signed -- the big fight we all want to see,” Mares said.

lance.pugmire@latimes.com

twitter.com/latimespugmire 

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