Gervonta Davis vs Abner Mares Opening Presser!
(December 27th) Two-time super featherweight champion Gervonta “Tank” Davis and three-division world champion Abner Mares went face-to-face for the first time Thursday at a press conference in Los Angeles as Davis defends his WBA title against Mares on Saturday, February 9 LIVE on SHOWTIME in an event presented by Premier Boxing Champions from StubHub Center in Carson, Calif.
Tickets for the event, which is promoted by Mayweather Promotions, TGB Promotions and Ringstar Sports, are on sale now and can be purchased at AXS.com.
“I believe that Abner Mares is a future Hall of Famer because he’s fought so many top-level guys. This is big for me because this is my first time being a main event in the U.S. and I just feel blessed to be here.
“In 2019, I want to make a big statement not only in the ring but by letting the boxing world know that I’m the next star. I’m aiming to headline a pay-per-view by 2020 if everything goes right. I have great fights lined up for next year, without looking past Abner.
“As soon as I got off the plane, I went straight to the gym and got some work in with some guys there. We’re not taking Abner lightly. I’m excited and blessed to be in this position. February 9, I’m confident it will be sold out and I’m confident that I will be that next boxing star.
“I’ve always known that you can’t underestimate anyone in the ring. You have to look at your opponent like they’re equal to you. I understand exactly what I have in front of me.
“I don’t know what Abner sees, but he was sure he wanted to take this fight so obviously he sees something. I have power, speed, movement and really a blend of everything. I believe that I’m a better fighter than him.
“It’s all about being focused in that ring and doing my job. I’m coming to get Abner Mares out of there.
“I wanted to fight Abner Mares out here in Southern California. Floyd Mayweather fought Arturo Gatti in his hometown and that’s basically what I’m doing here.”
“One day I just thought to myself that this fight against Gervonta Davis would be a great matchup and that I can win it. There are other big fights at featherweight that I could have gotten. I’m taking this fight because of the challenge that it brings. I’m all about that.
“I’m coming off of a great close fight against Leo Santa Cruz. I’m a winner every time I fight. I come to prove people wrong and perform. Not too many people do that these days.
“We’ll already have 50 percent of the fight won just by having a good corner, a good team and a great plan. The other 50 percent is up to the fighter to perform. One thing is having the game plan in your mind but it’s another thing to go out there and perform that game plan.
“We’re not just going into this fight blind. I’m not stupid. I’m taking this fight because I see something in this guy. It’s a tough fight, no doubt. All fights are tough. He’s in for a good fight. At the end of the day, you guys have to stop worrying about my weight and if I’m too small. You guys are going to get a great fight and that’s all that matters. Sit back, look pretty and enjoy the fight.
“You can’t compare Jesus Cuellar to Gervonta Davis. I know some people wanted to compare how I did against Cuellar and how Davis did against Cuellar, but he fought him two years after I did. It makes no sense. Gervonta Davis has a different style than Cuellar and it’s going to be a good fight. He’s an exciting fighter and he’s a boxer. He’s a boxer that trades punches so it makes for an exciting fight.
“People are going to recognize me as someone who took on everyone. People say this will be a new style for me, but I’ve seen them all. This is team ‘no fear’ and we’re going to make this happen.”
CALVIN FORD, Davis’ Trainer
“This is a great chance for us to go up against the great team that Abner Mares and Robert Garcia make. We’ve been watching them for a long time and we’re looking forward to it.
“We’ve been doing this for many years. We know that when it’s time to lock in, we’ll be locked in. Sparring has been going well. We’re just taking our time and doing what we have to do to get ready. We have a great team and everybody is doing their part. It’s our time to show what we’re capable of.
“On February 9, that’s when Gervonta Davis is going to step up and show the world what he truly is. I can’t wait for everyone to see it.”
ROBERT GARCIA, Mares’ Trainer
“Abner is very motivated. We have very strong sparring partners and he’s doing a great job in the gym already. Come February 9, everyone is in for a surprise. I respect Gervonta Davis and his team, but I think Abner is hungrier and looking to make history.
“This is going to be a great fight. We’re excited to see a great crowd of fans out there to enjoy a fight that’s going to be full of action.
“We know that this is a tough challenge. I think of this like the Adrien Broner vs. Marcos Maidana fight. Just like Davis, they said Broner is flashy, dangerous and this and that. But you all know what happened. Same thing is going to happen this time around.”
LEONARD ELLERBE, CEO of Mayweather Promotions
“This is a fight the fans wanted. These two guys have gone back and forth on social media and I’m excited that they’re going to finally get in the ring on February 9.
“Davis vs. Mares is a thrilling matchup between two very skilled warriors. You can’t expect anything but great fireworks from this fight.
“You can’t say enough about Gervonta Davis. He’s young, exciting and when he comes into the ring, he doesn’t play games. That style is going to make this an electrifying matchup.
“You don’t see fighters like Gervonta Davis very often. He has all the ingredients it takes to be a huge star. He knows that he has room to improve and he truly wants to get better. He has a tremendous skill set and you’ve only gotten a glimpse of what Gervonta Davis brings to the table so far.
“Abner Mares really wanted this fight. Any time a boxer goes out of his way to say ‘I want that guy’, the biggest and baddest guy in the division, that speaks volumes to the confidence that Abner Mares has. He’s exhibited this in all of his fights and he always performs at the highest level.”
RICHARD SCHAEFER, Chairman & CEO of Ringstar Sports
“This is a fascinating matchup taking place at the perfect venue. This is a great fight to get 2019 going. It’s youth, strength and size against experience, will and desire. May the best man win.
“I want to thank both fighters for coming together to make this fight happen. This is one that had been brewing for a while. Gervonta Davis is the best fighter in his division and he’s one of the guys who can talk the talk and walk the walk.
“Abner Mares has always sought out the most difficult challenges in front of him. He is a legend in this sport and one of the best fighters to ever come out of Mexico. These are the kinds of challenges that make Abner what he is in this sport.
“Gervonta Davis is one of the rising stars of the sport and Mares is one of its legendary champions. When you put those two together, the ones who are going to win are the fight fans.
“People are excited about this fight. Fans know that you never want to count out a great champion like Abner Mares. This is of course a dangerous fight for Mares, that’s how good Gervonta Davis is, but he obviously sees how he can win this fight.”
Davis vs Mares Set for February 9th
LIVE on Showtime from The Stub Hub, Carson, CA!
(December 20th) Two-time super featherweight champion Gervonta "Tank" Davis will defend his WBA title against three-division world champion Abner Mares on Saturday, February 9 live on SHOWTIME in an event presented by Premier Boxing Champions from StubHub Center in Carson, Calif.
Davis vs. Mares promises fireworks and high-stakes action as both men bring their fan-friendly styles to the ring. Davis, an unbeaten southpaw who earned his nickname "Tank'' by powering through opponents, has thunder in both fists with 19 of his 20 fights ending in knockout. Mares, who has engaged in many memorable fights throughout his storied career, will be moving up in weight and looking to capture a world title in a fourth weight class.
"This matchup is sure to make for a crowd pleaser, as both guys are known for delivering action when they step into the ring," said Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions. "Mares has an impressive resume and is determined to hand Davis his first loss. Davis has made a lot of noise in the sport at a young age and isn't slowing down. He executes impressively and continues to prove that he will be the next big star in boxing."
"Abner Mares is looking to join a select group of boxers by winning a title in his fourth different weight class and carrying that kind of motivation into the ring is the thing that can propel a boxer to greatness,'' said Tom Brown, President of TGB Promotions. "We've already seen the kind of speed and explosive punching power that Gervonta Davis brings into the ring. I expect that Mares will push him to even higher levels and that is the kind of match that should excite all boxing fans.''
"The matchup between Gervonta Davis and Abner Mares features pound for pound two of the most exciting boxers," said Richard Schaefer of Ringstar Sports. "For Gervonta it is the biggest test in his career and for Abner it is simply "Dare to be Great". These two are the definition of modern day gladiators who will put it all on the line on February 9. The winners of this exciting matchup are us - the fight fans and the general public who will be in for a treat!''
"This is an intriguing matchup for both men at crucial points of their careers," said Stephen Espinoza, President, SHOWTIME Sports. "Abner Mares has never backed down from a challenge, quietly building one of the strongest resumes in all of boxing while consistently delivering fight-of-the-year performances. In his first fight in the super featherweight division, Abner will be facing Gervonta Davis, one of the strongest, most talented and most exciting young champions in all of boxing. Abner seeks another signature upset in a remarkable career, while Gervonta looks to continue his streak of 11 straight stoppages against the most experienced and accomplished opponent he has faced to date. With these two come-forward, all-action fighters, boxing fans can expect another thrilling Showtime Championship Boxing main event."
Davis (20-0, 19 KOs) became the youngest reigning American world champion in 2017 when he delivered a star-making performance on SHOWTIME by knocking out Jose Pedraza for the IBF 130-pound title at just 22 years old. He became the youngest two-time world champion in April when he knocked out Jesus Cuellar in the third round of their WBA Super Featherweight Championship bout. The 24-year-old from Baltimore, Md., has earned the reputation as a power-punching menace as he has stopped all but one of his professional opponents.
"I'm very excited to be showcased in my first main event in the United States on February 9," said Davis. "I want to make a statement in this fight by putting on a tremendous performance against an experienced world champion like Abner Mares. I plan on showing everyone why I belong in pound-for-pound discussions and why I'm the most exciting champion in boxing today. You don't want to miss it!"
The 33-year-old Mares (31-3-1, 15 KOs) will be moving up to 130 pounds as he aims to become just the fourth fighter born in Mexico to win titles in four divisions, joining Juan Manuel Marquez, Erik Morales and Jorge Arce. Mares, who was born in Guadalajara, Jalisco and now lives in Montebello, Calif., was a member of the Mexican Olympic boxing team in the 2004 Athens Olympics before going on to win world titles at bantamweight, super bantamweight and featherweight. His two battles for the featherweight world title against Leo Santa Cruz epitomized the kinds of high-volume clashes that have set Mares apart from many of his contemporaries in the same weight classes. He lost a unanimous decision to Santa Cruz in his last fight in June and aims to tackle another weight class on February 9.
"I wanted this fight and I want this challenge against Gervonta Davis," said Mares. "I'm preparing well and I will add my fifth world title in my fourth weight class on February 9 on SHOWTIME."