Abner Mares, working in his first fight with new trainer Virgil Hunter, beat Jonathan Oquendo via decision tonight on scores of 96-94, 98-92, and 98-92. BLH had it 98-92 for Mares.
Mares (27-1-1, 14 KO) was cut in the fourth round, but the cut never seemed to bother him, and his cutman did a good job working on the injury, too. Mares, 28, wasn't his usual self in terms of style, but then "exciting" isn't what fighters are usually going for when they hire Virgil Hunter as their trainer.
After the fight, Mares told Showtime's Jim Gray that he did feel a little sluggish in the fight, which would make plenty of sense given the change in style and the fact that he'd been out of the ring for 11 months. Oquendo (24-4, 16 KO) was competitive early, but eventually outclassed, as he should have been.
Will Mares extend his career with this change in style? Will it suit him against better opponents? That remains to be seen, of course.
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