Anselmo Moreno hadn't lost in over 10 years entering Saturday night's fight versus Abner Mares, but that didn't stop Mares, the reigning WBC champion at 122 pounds, from sending him home with a decisive loss.
Mares didn't just win either. Scoring a unanimous decision win over anyone is impressive, but winning 120-106? Wow. Just wow.
He controlled the fight from start to finish. Throwing a ton of punches, he attacked Moreno with relentless vigor without being completely out of control. He was careful, displayed his defense and also showed that he's a capable counter-puncher in the process.
In short, it was an excellent showing for the champion.
Mares even managed to knock Moreno down in the fifth round. That's something that's never happened to the challenger, which seems about right considering that he hadn't lost since 2002 entering Saturday night's contest.
Using a quick but powerful combination, Mares was able to send Moreno to the ground, though. In an Associated Press report (via ESPN), Mares said, "I was a little shocked when he went down. I felt the punch, but didn't think it was that powerful."
Who should Mares fight next?
Whether he thought so or not, Moreno went down. Mares used his size advantage throughout the fight, bullying his adversary around the ring consistently. He's very capable with either hand, which allows him to steer him whichever way he would like without leaving his comfort zone.
Now at 25-0-1, Mares has definitely developed a reputation. He has 13 knockouts, and at 26 years old he has plenty of room to grow as a titleholder. He's shown that he knows how to perform with the belt around his waist and how to deal with the pressures associated with that.
The scorecard may have been more lopsided than necessary Saturday night, but the fight was definitely Mares' to win. His command of the ring, and his complete repertoire will make him very difficult to beat, no matter who he fights next.
Saturday night's fight wasn't all that competitive, but Mares was, once again, fun to watch. He's a tireless worker with the boxing skills to match, and those guys are rare.