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Boxing View

By Carlos Costa

Wed, 21 Aug 2013

Mexican WBC world title challenger Jhonny Gonzalez looked in great form during public workout ahead of his thrilling tough rumble against compatriot Abner Mares this coming Saturday (Aug 24) in Carson, Calif, a fact that suggest that the Mares-Gonzalez rumble could be one one of the outstanding fights of the year.

Just three days ago, the former 2-division champ fom Mexico City passed with flying colors the WBC regulatory pre-weight check before the title fight.

One week before the fight, Jhonny successfully tipped the scale at 131.17 lbs (59.5 kgs), one pound (half kg) under the limit established by the rules of the WBC, which states that the boxer should not surpass 5% of the weight class limit seven days before the world title bout.

"This fight is something that motivates me to the max. Jhonny Gonzalez is back and on Saturday there will be new world champion," said Jhonny after completing the pre-weighin check, handled by WBC official Luis Medina.

Jhonny Gonzalez, a proven warrior of uncountable thrilling battles - who does not remember Jhonny's epic clash with Israel Vasquez? - completed his training in Ciudad de Mexico and is now in Carson, California, ready for another clash of titans against undefeated Abner Mares for the WBC featherweight supremacy.

By all accounts, training camp went smoothly for Jhonny under the watchful eye of Hall-of-Famer Ignacio "Nacho" Beristain - in my opinion the best boxing trainer in the world - and now the 31 year-old Jhonny looks forward to climb up the ring for the golden chance of re-capturing the world crown that it once belonged to him; though the mission is not easy at all as Mares is an undefeated superbly talented 3-division world champion with a stellar record of his own.

During the months of intense training at don Nacho's La Romanza Gym, Jhonny Gonzalez polished his physical conditions and fine tuned his outstanding boxing skills as a triumph against Mexican compatriot Abner Mares will catapult Jhonny back on top of the 126-pound division.


Although on paper the favorite might be the younger Guadalajara native Abner Mares, veteran Jhonny Gonzalez is prepared to throw in all his proven courage and extensive ring experience to regain the WBC Featherweright World title that he captured from Hosumi Hasegawa (33-4, 15 KOs) in 2011 in Japan.

Jhonny defended his crown several times till September of 2012 when he relinquished to awesome slugger Daniel Ponce De Leon (44-5, 35 KOs), who in turn lost it by knockout, precisely to Abner Mares.

Will Jhonny Gonzalez be able to defeat the unbeaten Abner Mares to regain his title this coming Saturday?

That is exactly what Jhonny Gonzalez plans to do.

To re-capture his green/golden belt, Gonzalez (54-8, 46 KOs), a former bantamweight and featherweight king, has different fight plans depending on what Abner Mares (26-0-1, 14 KOs) would bring to the ring, as strategies have already been worked out between Gonzalez and his head coach, the acclaimed Hall-of-famer trainer Ignacio Beristain.

"We'll be ready for what Abner brings to the ring," said the Jhonny.

"If he (Mares) comes out to box, I'd cut him off and pour combinations on him. If he comes out aggressively charging forward throwing attacks me, I'll make good use of boxing at a distance... and my boxing from a distance is better than his. Should he press to come inside, I'd counter throwing punches at him with both hands. And, very importantly, I'd move well on the top ring because Mares is a fighter that has showed much power in his fight against Ponce de Leon," continued Johnny.

"We worked on the speed while sparring. We did a lot of boxing and counters to get the right rhythm fine tuned while throwing lot of punches."

During the last week of training in Mexico, Jhonny Gonzalez sparred six rounds a day. In total, about 20 rounds, and now he feels in top shape, ready to mix it up with the unbeaten Mares.

Both boxers, the 4 years younger Mares and the taller Jhonny have hordes of loyal fans, making the fight a full-swing Mexican party in Carson, Calif, and just being there is huge excitement.


Tomorrow (Aug 22) will be the Final Presser at StubHub Center - American Express Stadium Room (S Avalon Blvd, Carson Calif). Presser begins at 1pm PT

Friday (Aug 23) will take place the Official WBC Weight-in will be at Biltmore Hotel - Gold Room (S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles) at 12 noon.

Saturday (Aug 24) doors at StubHub Center open at 2pm. Showtime Championship Boxing? Telecast begins at 7:25pm PT

The thrilling double WBC World Titles card is a production of Golden Boy Promotions in association with Cerveza Corona to be aired LIVE on Televisa and Showtime.

Photos courtesy of Promociones del Pueblo

Jhonny hits the heavy bag.

Gonzalez (R) poses with the author.

Mares-Gonzalez Golden Boy Promotions promo VIDEO:

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