By Rick Reeno
MGM Grand, Las Vegas - Abner Mares (26-0, 14KOs) became a three division world champion with a ninth round stoppage of Daniel Ponce De Leon (44-5, 35KOs) to capture the WBC featherweight championship. Ponce was down twice in the fight.
After feeling each other out in round one, Mares started taking the fight to Ponce in the second and dropped him hard with a combination in the closing seconds. Ponce was having trouble with Mares' fast hands and accurate punches. Ponce was also telegraphing many of his punches and Mares saw them coming a mile away. Mares appeared to be wearing down in by the eight round as Ponce started coming on and bullying him around the ring. But during he ninth, Mares caught Ponce with a hard counter that send him down very hard. Ponce got up on unsteady legs. Mares starting unloading with both hands as pinned Ponce against the ropes and referee Jay Nady stepped in to stop it.