Three-time World Champion Israel Vazquez, Two-division World Champion Rafael Marquez and top-rated contender Abner Mares participated at a Media Workout Tuesday at Fortune Gym in Hollywood, Calif. IBF bantamweight champ Yonnhy Perez was a no-show. Here is what the fighters said on Tuesday.
“With the three fights we’ve already had, I think Marquez and I have already solidified our legacy. But they asked if we wanted to do it again, so of course, I said sure. Why not? If the fans want this fight, so do I.
“I believe our rivalry is far and above the best rivalries ever for one reason. Outside the ring, both of us totally respect each other as human beings. And that counts a lot to me.
“But when it’s time to fight, you know we will put forth nothing less than an all-out effort. We’ve done it three straight times and I expect the same from both of us on Saturday.
“My mind-set is totally on Saturday, and winning the fight. I’m sure Rafa’s is too. Physically, I am 100 percent and ready to go.’’
“I lost the last round in the last fight basically because my (former) cornermen made a lot of mistakes. Instead of telling me to go out and fight, my instructions were to box and that cost me the fight.
“That’s one of the reasons I brought in a new trainer (former World Champion Daniel Zaragoza) to work with me. He is able to give me his full attention, 100 percent of the time. My old cornermen could not.
“I am very excited and totally prepared to fight Vazquez again. I am very confident I will tie the score. But I know I have to fight smart and never relax too much because Vazquez hits so hard. You dismiss him for a second and it could cost you.’’
“I am as good as I can be and can’t wait for Saturday. As each day passes, the excitement inside me builds. This is the first time I have been involved in a fight where there is something going on almost every day, where there is actually a fight week schedule with things for me to do.
“It is keeping me busy, but I love it. To be involved in a fight like this, on a great card like this, makes me feel special and it makes me realize even more that I have to treat this like a real fight.
“Actually having something to do almost every day is a good thing. With all the continual reminders that I have to do this today, something else tomorrow and so forth, it keeps me focused and it keeps my mind from wandering.
“It also keeps my mind away from eating, which is perfect because my weight right now is just about perfect.’’
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Vazquez and Marquez will collide for a fourth time in the main event on “Once And Four All” this Saturday at STAPLES Center on SHOWTIME®. Vazquez leads the epic series, 2-1. In a battle of unbeatens in the co-feature on an excellent fight card, Mares will challenge defending champion Perez for his IBF belt.
Tickets, priced at $250, $125, $75, $50 and $25, are available at STAPLES Center Box Office, online at Ticketmaster.com and via Ticketmaster charge-by-phone lines at (800) 745-3000. The doubleheader, which is co-promoted by Golden Boy Promotions, Gary Shaw Productions, Espinoza Boxing Promotions and Zanfer Promotions and sponsored by Cerveza Tecate, will air live on SHOWTIME at 9 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast).
Doors open Saturday at 2:55 p.m. PT. The first live non-televised undercard bout begins at 3 p.m. PT.