By Ryan Burton
Leo Santa Cruz and Abner Mares engaged in an exciting battle in August, 2015 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Santa Cruz won the fight via majority decision and Mares has campaigned for a rematch ever since.
Mares returned to the ring almost 15 months later and captured another world title by defeating Jesus Cuellar via split decision. He then spent the next several months waiting on the rematch with Santa Cruz, who defeated Carl Frampton in January to avenge his only professional defeat.
"That is the fight we are looking for and what we are pushing for - Leo Santa Cruz. That is the fight I am looking for but I am not going to let this happen again which means I am not going to wait specifically just for him so we are definitely talking to other promotional companies. I don't want to stick around waiting just for Leo but again that is number one so hopefully we get that fight," Mares told BoxingScene.com on December 15th at the Pioneer Events Center in Lancaster, Calif. during a PBC on FS1 card.
Ringstar Sports founder Richard Schaefer, who has promoted Mares' past two fights, recently told BoxingScene.com's Steve Kim that he was working on locking in a date and venue for the fight and that he wants the rematch to once again take place at the Staples Center.
Mares (31-2-1, 15 KOs), who holds the WBA "regular" featherweight title thought that the fight would happen on October 14th after the WBA ordered the contest but instead both he and Santa Cruz (34-1-1, 19 KOs), who holds the WBA "super" featherweight title, fought on the same card against different opponents.
Mares had been very vocal of his desire to face Santa Cruz on that date in October while Santa Cruz's father/trainer insisted that his son get a tune up fight first.
"We were going to fight. Verbally it was agreed to but for some reason it didn't happen and we ended up fighting different opponents on the same night," said Mares.
As for a time frame for the fight, Mares wants it to be locked in by the spring or he will look for a different opponent.
"I hope no later than April. If I don't have anything agreed to by mid March or April I am not going to wait around and I will just go after any name," Mares revealed.
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