Abner Mares vs Leo Santa Cruz 3 Possible for Aug

An upcoming bout marks a farewell for former three-division champion Abner Mares, as he prepares to face his longtime Los Angeles rival, four-division champion Leo Santa Cruz, in a highly anticipated trilogy match. Leo Santa Cruz and Abner Mares is still in the works, with details yet to be finalized. There's a possibility that the bout could be rescheduled for later in the year, or alternatively, that Santa Cruz may feature in the Aug. 3rd Crawford vs Madrimov card independently.

Both fighters, Santa Cruz aged 35 and Mares 38, have faced a period of inactivity. Santa Cruz (38-2-1, 19 KO) last entered the ring in early 2022, with his most recent notable encounter being a knockout loss to Gervonta “Tank” Davis in October 2020. Meanwhile, Mares (31-3-2, 15 KO) has only fought once since his rematch defeat to Santa Cruz in 2018, resulting in a draw against Miguel Flores in 2022.

Mares has grappled with recurring eye injuries, leading to extended breaks from boxing. He transitioned to a role as a commentator for PBC broadcasts, subsequently joining the Prime Video team after Showtime's departure from the boxing scene.

Recalling past boxing rivalries, particularly the Israel Vazquez vs Rafael Marquez IV encounter in 2010, serves as a cautionary tale. Given Mares' eye injury history, it's imperative to proceed with caution. However, it's worth noting that the Santa Cruz-Mares rivalry lacks the intensity of the Vazquez-Marquez series, with Santa Cruz leading 2-0 in their previous encounters, which didn't reach the same iconic status.

Santa Cruz (38-2-1, 19 KOs) expressed readiness for a return to the ring last month, following his February 2022 super featherweight victory over Keenan Carbajal.

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