Yonnhy Perez is fighting tonight on Showtime, but you probably didn't know that. He's fighting on the undercard of the Marquez-Vasquez fight.
He should be headlining.
Perez is a long, exciting fighter that fights at Bantamweight. That's part of the problem. The lower weight classes just get no respect.
He's stepping in with Abner Mares, a pitbull of a fighter who will bring the fight to the long Perez.
Amazingly, both fighters are undefeated at a perfect 20-0. Perez has one more knockout than Mares, with 14.
Perez looked very, very good beating up on Joseph Agbeko back in October, a fight that many "experts" expected Agbeko to win.
Video of Mares shows he comes in without abandon, throwing a lot of punches and lot of power shots, especially hooks.
Perez will need his reach to keep Abner off of his chest. He'll need his footwork to keep moving and circling, using angles to keep Mares off balance. He'll need to be very, very active and throw a lot of punches.
This should be a very good fight. Both fighters like to mix it up, although Perez seems a bit more strategic while Mares simply rushes in without abandon.
Mares is from Mexico while Perez hails from Columbia. In other words, neither guy is backing down.
While Perez is typically ranked within the top three in the Bantamweight rankings, Mares is more of a top 10 guy. Don't let that fool you—these fighters are very, very close in ability.
More importantly, whoever wins this fight could face the likes of Nonito Donaire, Vic Darchinyan, Juan Manuel Lopez, Chris John, or Yuriorkis Gamboa. In other words, it's a springboard to bigger and better things.
The biggest difference between the two is the discrepency in their ages. Perez is 31, while Mares is 24. I don't think, at this point, that will mean much in the fight. Perez got started light and has fresh legs for a middle-aged fighter. He's also a very good athlete.
Overall, it should be a great fight and just as exciting as Marquez-Vasquez.