Mares Wins Controversial
In Fight Marred By Horrendous Refereeing
By Bret "The Threat" Newton
Referee Russell Mora has a whole lot of explaining to do. It
may have appeared to fans that Russell Mora was on the
payroll tonight. If you thought the judges that were
suspended in the Williams vs. Lara fight was bad, this was
much worse. Mora should be investigated and suspended
indefinitely, immediately, if things appear as SHOWTIME
Abner Mares (now 22-0-1, 13 KO's) won the IBF Bantamweight
Title (and bantamweight tournament final) with a majority
decision win over Joseph Agbeko in a fight that was filled
with high controversy. Mares appeared to be in control
early, but after a right hand in the 4th, things turned
In round 1, Mares was forcing the fight with Agbeko,
applying constant pressure, making Agbeko fight a sloppier
style than used to. However, Mares was mixing in a number of
unintentional low blows, right from the opening round.
Russell Mora gave him a few quick warnings here and there,
but for the most part was warning Agbeko for holding Mares'
head down, which he was not. It didn't stop there however,
after a slip from throwing a wild shot in the opening round,
Agebko fell through the ropes to which Mora ruled an
official knockdown. Replays clearly showed he slipped.
In round 2, Mares kept the pressure on, but along came more
low blows. More warning to Agbeko from Mora ensued.
In round 4, a huge counter right hand from Agbeko buckled
Mares and the fight looked to have take a dramatic turn.
Agbeko, however, must not have realize how hurt Mares was
because he never followed up. Mares was out where he was
standing, but Agbeko allowed him back into the fight.
In round 5, Mares was completely punched out and Agbeko
began to take control of the fight.
In round 6 an accidental headbutt opened up a cut over the
right eye of Mares. Mora decided to warn Agbeko despite the
two accidentally clashing heads. A bit of a conflict there.
In round 7, another big low blow by Mares and Mora warns
In round 10. Another huge low blow from Mares and Mora
actually halts the fight, warns Mares, but doesn't take a
point. Very bizarre.
In round 11, Mares landed the biggest low blow to this point
and Agbeko goes down in pain. Mora rules it a knockdown!
Agbeko is furious and rightly so. This wasn't the Zab Judah
vs. Amir Khan low blow kind of knockdown, this was the real
deal. Where's Vic Drakulich when you need him?
In round 12, the two traded while Agbeko appeared to close
Final scores were 113-113, and 115-111 on the other two
cards. Agbeko falls to 28-3 with 22 KO's. After the fight
Agbeko stated he felt Mora was a "racist", and Agbeko's team
announced they were filing a protest.
Broadcaster Jim Gray spoke with Mora after the fight stating
it was one of the worst officiating jobs he and commentators
Al Bernstein and Antonio Tarver had seen. After showing Mora
the replay of the knockdown, Mora began to sweat and stated
it looked like a legal punch live, but would like to sit
down and watch the footage again later. Umm?
Also worthy of note, Mora had continuously warned Agebko
every time HE was low-blowed for holding Mares' head down,
yet when Mares held Agbeko's head down in one of the later
rounds, Mora again warned Agbeko, this time telling him to
"get your head up". A little contradicting to say the least.