By Francisco Salazar and Rocco Morales at ringside
In the fourth installment of their classic series, former two-time word champion Rafael Marquez (39-5, 35 KOs) evened things up at 2-2 with a third round TKO over former three-time world champion Israel Vazquez (44-5, 33 KOs) on Saturday night before 9,236 at the Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles. Vazquez was cut over the left eye almost immediately and it was ruled to be caused by a punch. Marquez’ punches were very sharp and the blood was flowing heavily from Vazquez’ cut by the end of round two. Vazquez was cut over the left eye by a headbutt early in round three and Marquez continued his vicious assault, knocking down Vazquez and then finishing things with a brutal follow up attack that prompted referee Raul Caiz Jr. to wave it off. Time was 1:33.
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Unbeaten IBF bantamweight champion Yonnhy Perez (20-0-1, 14 KOs) and unbeaten 2004 Olympian Abner Mares (20-0-1, 13 KOs) battled to a twelve round draw. It was a great fight that lived up to its billing as both fighters left it all in the ring. Good two-way action early. Perez began imposing his will midway but Mares came on strong down the stretch. Scores were 115-113 Mares, 114-114, 114-114. Perez retains his title.