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Leo Santa Cruz vs. Miguel Flores & John Molina Jr. Los Angeles Press Conference Quotes & Photos
 
Santa Cruz Defends Featherweight World Title Against Exciting Challenger Flores Saturday, February 16 in Premier Boxing Champions on FOX & FOX Deportes Main Event Live from 
Microsoft Theater at L.A. Live in Los Angeles
 
Hard-Hitting Molina Jr. Takes on Undefeated Former World Champion Omar Figueroa on Telecast Beginning at
 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT
 
Click HERE for Photos from Luis Mejia/TGB Promotions
 
LOS ANGELES (January 3, 2019) – Featherweight world champion Leo Santa Cruz and exciting challenger Miguel Flores went face-to-face Thursday at a press conference in Los Angeles ahead of their world title showdown that headlines Premier Boxing Champions on FOX & FOX Deportes Saturday, February 16 from Microsoft Theater at L.A. Live in Los Angeles.
Also in attendance at Thursday’s press conference was hard-hitting John Molina Jr., who faces unbeaten former champion Omar Figueroa in a 12-round junior welterweight clash as part of televised coverage beginning at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT.
Tickets for the show, which is promoted by TGB Promotions and Ringstar Sports are on sale now, and can be purchased at AXS.com.
Here is what the press conference participants had to say Thursday from the Conga Room at L.A. Live:
LEO SANTA CRUZ
“He may think I’m underestimating him, but I’ve never underestimated any fighter I’ve faced. Media and fans may think differently, but I don’t think I’m superior to anyone else, I just do my work.
“I get all of my confidence from my training. I learn everything in the gym. I work hard and train like I’m the challenger. I want to go and give the fans a great fight and continue to grow my name.
“When I retire I want to be known as a great Mexican fighter, so I’ve trained very hard with my dad. Even though he’s sick, he still is in the gym pushing me and telling me what to do. It’s a huge motivation to see him there supporting me. I know that if he sees me pushing myself, it’s going to motivate him too.
“When I say that I want to unify the featherweight division, I’m not looking past Miguel Flores. I have to be positive and always look toward the future. I’m not looking back. I’m just training hard to get that win and become the best at 126-pounds. First that means beating Miguel Flores.
“This is going to be a great fight. Miguel Flores is a tough fighter who throws a lot of punches and comes forward. He’s got a big right hand and he works the body well. He’s a fighter who leaves everything in the ring.
“I want to unify against any of the champions. I want any of the champions in 2019 and I want to become the featherweight king.”
MIGUEL FLORES
“It’s been a long road for me. I’m going to put on a good show on February 16. Leo and his father are professionals and they’ll work hard in the gym, but I have a feeling they’re overlooking me.
“I know all the hard work I’ve put in the gym and I know that I deserve this opportunity and I’m going to prove it by making the most of it.
“This is a great night of fights and I’m thankful to everyone that made it possible. My trainer, Aaron Navarro, has been with me and is really a father figure for me. The support from back home has been amazing.
“I’m excited to be starting off the year with this great opportunity. I’m going to give the writers an easy task, because on February 16 I’m going to give them the Upset of the Year and the Fight of the Year on the same night.
“People are going to be in for a treat on February 16. We have two Mexican fighters going toe-to-toe. You’re going to want to show up to see this one.”
JOHN MOLINA JR.


“February 16, there is going to be a war. It’s a great night of fighting. This is a fight that I specifically asked for. I believe stylistically it’s going to be all-action.
“I saw Figueroa say that he’s not going to see me get out of the fourth round. Well he’s not going to see that, because he’s going to be asleep.
“Talk is cheap, like I always say. I could talk until I’m blue in the face about how I’m going to hurt this kid. But it’ll sound naïve until I show you on February 16.
“I like Figueroa’s confidence. It’s going to make for a great fight. I don’t ever want to face a guy who’s going to come to lose. I know he’s coming to win. I’m glad to share the ring with great fighters like Leo, Miguel and Omar for this special night.”
TOM BROWN, President of TGB Promotions
“Premier Boxing Champions have made a major commitment to bringing some of the best and biggest fights to Southern California.
“L.A. has always been regarded as one of the best fight cities in the world and home to some of the greatest fights in boxing. We believe that Los Angeles, including right here downtown, can become a major hub for the sport of boxing.


“Southern California has long been a hotbed of slugfests between great Mexican-American fighters, and with Leo Santa Cruz and Miguel Flores, plus Omar Figueroa vs. John Molina Jr., we have the makings of another all-out war on February 16. This is going to be a great night.”
RICHARD SCHAEFER, Chairman & CEO of Ringstar Sports
“Los Angeles is once again the fight capital of the world. There are some great matchups coming here for the passionate Southern California fight fans.
“The Microsoft Theatre is a fantastic venue for boxing and it hosts signature events throughout the year, and on February 16 it will host a great doubleheader. They say that styles make fights, and I don’t think there are better matchups than these two fights.
“These fighters are warriors. No one on this card is ever in a boring fight. It’s like throwing oil in the fire. This is going to be a night you don’t want to miss and a great crowd watching these fights.”
Featherweight World Champion Leo Santa Cruz Defends Title Against Exciting Challenger Miguel Flores Saturday, February 16 in Premier Boxing Champions on FOX & FOX Deportes Main Event Live from Microsoft Theater at L.A. Live in Los Angeles
 
Plus! Undefeated Former World Champion Omar Figueroa Takes on Hard-Hitting John Molina Jr. in Clash of High-Octane Styles
Telecast Starts at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT
 
Tickets on Sale Now!
 
LOS ANGELES (January 3, 2019) – Featherweight world champion Leo “El Terremoto” Santa Cruz will defend his WBA title against Houston’s Miguel Flores in a showdown that headlines Premier Boxing Champions on FOX and FOX Deportes Saturday, February 16 from Microsoft Theater at L.A. Live in Los Angeles.
Televised coverage begins at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT and features an exciting 12-round junior welterweight clash between unbeaten former champion Omar Figueroa and hard-hitting John Molina Jr.
Tickets for the show, which is promoted by TGB Promotions and Ringstar Sports are on sale now, and can be purchased at AXS.com.
Leo Santa Cruz is one of the most dynamic boxers in a deep division that features outstanding boxers,” said Tom Brown, President of TGB Promotions. “Santa Cruz is never in a boring fight. His high volume punching is highlighted by its accuracy and efficiency, making him a master ring tactician. Miguel Flores always comes to battle and has caught a couple tough breaks. But a victory over Santa Cruz could reverse his ring fortunes. Omar Figueroa vs. John Molina Jr. Enough said. You know what they do.”
Leo Santa Cruz and Miguel Flores were both born in Michoacán and they have the blood of the proud Aztec warriors flowing through them,” said Richard Schaefer, Chairman and CEO of Ringstar Sports. “Between them they have 61 fights and 58 wins! For them, February 16 is not just going to be another fight, for them it is about pride and country. The huge audience on FOX and FOX Deportes will be in for a treat and so will be the thousands in attendance at the Microsoft Theatre at L.A. Live in Los Angeles.  What a way to start the New Year!”
A three-division world champion fighting out of Los Angeles, Santa Cruz (35-1-1, 19 KOs) enters this fight after completing a second exciting duel against Abner Mares that again saw Santa Cruz edge his rival on the scorecards. The 30-year-old will make the third defense of his title after he claimed the 126-pound belt from Carl Frampton in 2017, avenging the defeat he suffered to Frampton the year before. Santa Cruz has competed in title bouts in 15 of his last 17 fights, while picking up belts at 118, 122 and 126-pounds.
“I trained really hard for this fight like I do all my fights and I’m really focused and determined to get the win, because I know that after this one, I want to clean up the division,” said Santa Cruz. “I’m not overlooking my opponent at all. The main thing is I have to get this win and look great against Miguel Flores. I want to beat Flores and continue to show the world that I’m one of the best. After defeating Flores, I’ll be ready to clean up the division. I just have to be smart and not be too wild because I want to get the knockout and look spectacular. I know if I can be calm, I can do what I have to do.”
Flores (23-2, 11 KOs) was born in Mexico, but was raised and fights out of Houston. The 26-year-old rose up the rankings with victories over Ryan Kielczweski, Ruben Tamayo and Mario Briones. After suffering a setback defeat to Dat Nguyen, Flores was ahead on the scorecards against Chris Avalos in a fight on FS1 when the contest was stopped due to a cut on Flores’ eyebrow that was controversially ruled to have come from a punch. Flores bounced back in his last fight to stop Raul Chirino in April.
“We’re taking this fight very seriously and we understand that we’re going against the top featherweight in the division,” said Flores. “We know he’s looking to unify, but he has to first worry about me on February 16. We have to stay focused and smart. We know Leo likes to have brawls and he likes to throw a lot of punches. We have to be smart and box when we want to box and fight when we want to fight. We have to stick to our game plan.”
Figueroa (27-0-1, 19 KOs) made a name for himself with his relentless style that led to him capturing a lightweight title against Nihito Arakawa in a memorable 2013 clash. Representing Weslaco, Texas, Figueroa went on to defend his title twice before defeating former multiple-division champion Ricky Burns in 2015. The 29-year-old followed that up with a victory over Antonio DeMarco and after an injury layoff, came back in 2017 to drop Robert Guerrero five times on his way to a stoppage victory on FOX.
“I’m approaching this fight as something huge, and as a catalyst to even bigger things,” said Figueroa. “This is like the last leg of my career considering I just turned 29 a few weeks ago. I know it’s cliché to say it’s a crossroads, career-defining fight, but it is. I’m using this as building my case to take over the boxing world. I don’t think there’s any secret to my strategy. We all know how I fight. I plan to steam roll over him and get him out of there as quickly as possible. The thing that kills my opponents is they know what’s coming and they can’t stop it.”
Molina (30-7, 24 KOs) has never backed down from a challenge and has been in the ring with some of the best boxers from lightweight to welterweight during his career. The 35-year-old from Covina, California beat a fierce Ruslan Provodnikov by unanimous decision in 2016. Another standout battle from Molina’s career saw him drop former welterweight champion Lucas Matthysse twice before losing on an 11th round knockout. In his last fight he scored a fourth round TKO victory over Ivan Redkach in a back-and-forth bout from last December on FS1.
“This fight has been a long time coming, I’ve personally asked for it for three or four years now and it’s finally here,” said Molina. “I feel like a kid waiting for Christmas day to open my gifts. I’m crazily excited to open this gift. I have to be myself and I believe it will be a victory for me. Omar is no slouch. It’s tough to beat a guy who doesn’t like to lose and doesn’t know how to lose. He’s got that zero on his record for a reason. It’s going to a very entertaining fight. I believe this is the fight of the night and we’re going to steal the show.”





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