“ I don't fight to win belts. I fight to fight. ”
Jul 15, 2017 / Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Long Island, New York
Fighting for the first time in 19 months, Figueroa scored five knockdowns on his way to earning a third-round TKO in a matchup of former world champions.
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Omar Figueroa Jr. had to feel the nerves coursing through him again. It was a welcome greeting, that tingly pinch in his legs and arms. It was his body’s way of telling “El Panterita” he was ready to go—that the 19-month layoff was over and his passion for boxing was fully reignited.
If ever there have been two former world champions arriving at the same point from distinctly different directions, they are Omar Figueroa Jr. and Robert Guerrero.
Omar Figueroa Jr. stood there, oversized gloves dangling by his sides, before around 300 strange faces in a converted wrestling arena in his parents’ hometown of Rio Bravo, Mexico. He had every right to be filled with nerves. He was 7 years old, and about to embark on what’s become a life’s journey.
Win vs Robert Guerrero
Jul 15, 2017 • Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Long Island, New York
Omar Figueroa Jr. WINS against Robert Guerrero by TKO in Round 3 of 10
Win vs Antonio DeMarco
Dec 12, 2015 • AT&T Center, San Antonio
Omar Figueroa Jr. WINS against Antonio DeMarco by UD in Round 12 of 12
Win vs Burns
May 09, 2015 • State Farm Arena, Hidalgo, Texas
Figueroa Jr WINS against Burns by UD in Round 12 of 12
Win vs Daniel Estrada 32-2-1
Aug 16, 2014 • StubHub Center, Carson, California, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Daniel Estrada by KO in Round 9 of 12
Win vs Jerry Belmontes 19-3-0
Apr 26, 2014 • StubHub Center, Carson, California, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Jerry Belmontes by SD in Round 12 of 12
Win vs Nihito Arakawa 24-2-1
Jul 27, 2013 • AT&T Center, San Antonio, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Nihito Arakawa by UD in Round 12 of 12
Win vs Abner Cotto 16-0-0
Apr 20, 2013 • Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Abner Cotto by KO in Round 1 of 10
Win vs Henry Auraad 14-6-1
Mar 02, 2013 • Our Lady of the Lake University Gym, San Antonio, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Henry Auraad by KO in Round 1 of 8
Win vs Dominic Salcido 18-3-0
Jul 21, 2012 • U.S. Bank Arena, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Dominic Salcido by UD in Round 10 of 10
Win vs Alain Hernandez 18-10-2
Jun 23, 2012 • Staples Center, Los Angeles, California, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Alain Hernandez by TKO in Round 1 of 8
Win vs Tyler Ziolkowski 14-15-0
Jun 02, 2012 • Home Depot Center, Carson, California, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Tyler Ziolkowski by KO in Round 1 of 6
Win vs Robbie Cannon 12-6-2
May 05, 2012 • MGM Grand, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Robbie Cannon by TKO in Round 2 of 8
Win vs Ramon Ayala 23-2-1
Mar 16, 2012 • Fantasy Springs Casino, Indio, California, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Ramon Ayala by KO in Round 2 of 10
WIN vs Michael Perez 15-0-1
Jan 06, 2012 • Fantasy Springs Casino, Indio, California, USA
Michael Perez LOSES to Omar Figueroa Jr by RTD in Round 6 of 10
Win vs Marcos Herrera 6-6-1
Aug 26, 2011 • UIC Pavilion, Chicago, Illinois, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Marcos Herrera by KO in Round 2 of 8
Win vs Eric Cruz 11-6-3
Jun 17, 2011 • State Farm Arena, Hidalgo, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Eric Cruz by UD in Round 8 of 8
Win vs John Figueroa 7-9-3
Apr 23, 2011 • Nokia Theater, Los Angeles, California, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against John Figueroa by KO in Round 2 of 8
Draw vs Arturo Quintero 15-4-0
Nov 12, 2010 • State Farm Arena, Hidalgo, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr DRAWS with Arturo Quintero by SD in Round 8 of 8
Win vs Julian Rodriguez 19-18-4
Jun 18, 2010 • Convention Center, McAllen, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Julian Rodriguez by DQ in Round 2 of 6
Win vs Edgar Portillo 6-3-1
Mar 27, 2010 • Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Edgar Portillo by UD in Round 6 of 6
Win vs Anthony Woods 6-12-0
Dec 12, 2009 • UIC Pavilion, Chicago, Illinois, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Anthony Woods by TKO in Round 2 of 4
Win vs Jeremy Marts 5-7-0
Aug 22, 2009 • Toyota Center, Houston, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Jeremy Marts by TKO in Round 1 of 4
Win vs Jorge De Leon 2-4-0
Jun 04, 2009 • International Convention Center, Pharr, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Jorge De Leon by TKO in Round 3 of 6
Win vs Ramiro Torres 3-16-1
May 15, 2009 • Casa de Amistad, Harlingen, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Ramiro Torres by TKO in Round 1 of 4
Win vs Daniel Garcia 9-6-1
Feb 27, 2009 • Casa de Amistad, Harlingen, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Daniel Garcia by TKO in Round 3 of 8
Win vs Arturo Herrera 5-12-1
Nov 21, 2008 • Casa de Amistad, Harlingen, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Arturo Herrera by TKO in Round 2 of 4
Win vs Jose Rodolfo Reyes 0-5-0
Oct 18, 2008 • Casa de Amistad, Harlingen, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Jose Rodolfo Reyes by TKO in Round 1 of 4
Win vs Joe Reyes 0-5-0
Oct 18, 2008 • Casa de Amistad, Harlingen, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Joe Reyes by TKO in Round 1 of 4
Win vs Edwin Espinoza 0-1-0
Jun 21, 2008 • Rio Grande Valley Harley Davidson, McAllen, Texas, USA
Omar Figueroa Jr WINS against Edwin Espinoza by KO in Round 1 of 4
An aggressive approach and power-packed punches have made Omar “Panterita” Figueroa Jr. one of the most exciting fighters in boxing. The Texas native has been hampered by hand injuries, but his brawling style helped him become an unbeaten world champion at 135 pounds. Now he has sights set on conquering the 140-pound division.
Since his first professional fight at age 18, the hard-hitting Figueroa has established himself as one of boxing’s rising stars.
Growing up in Weslaco, Texas, Figueroa was introduced to the sport at the age of 6 by his father and trainer, Omar Sr., so he could defend himself.
Figueroa took honors courses in high school, but he already was serious enough about boxing that he made his professional debut on June 6, 2008, less than a month after graduating.
He knocked out Edwin Espinoza in the first round, but was still undecided about his career path.
From college to the school of hard knocks
Figueroa went to Texas A&M University on an academic scholarship to study construction science.
However, he left college after one semester to pursue a boxing career after quickly finishing off two more opponents in the ring that fall.
Figueroa won each of his first eight bouts in less than three rounds.
It wasn’t until he faced Edgar Portillo in Las Vegas in March 2010 that one of his fights went the distance, with Figueroa winning a six-round unanimous decision.
A rising contender
After dispatching Marcos Herrera with a second-round KO in August 2011, Figueroa faced Michael Perez in a battle of unbeaten 135-pounders in Indio, California, in January 2012.
Perez was favored in the bout, but Figueroa won when Perez was unable to continue after six rounds.
After five more early-round KOs and a win by 10-round unanimous decision, Figueroa fought Abner Cotto in San Antonio in April 2013 in another clash of undefeated fighters.
Once again, Figueroa applied pressure right from the opening bell, and quickly knocked down Cotto twice in gaining a first-round KO. The win propelled Figueroa from prospect to contender.
Becoming a champion
Figueroa's next bout—against Japan’s Nihito Arakawa in San Antonio on July 27, 2013—was one of the year’s best fights.
When it ended after 12 rounds, Figueroa won by unanimous decision, claiming an interim 135-pound world title.
The duo combined for an incredible 2,112 punches. Figueroa landed 51 percent of his punches, included 450 power shots, which was the third-highest total ever recorded among 135-pounders in CompuBox history.
The fight took its toll on Figueroa’s hands, a recurring problem for the power puncher.
He didn’t return to the ring until April 26, 2014, when he faced fellow Texan Jerry Belamontes, who had beaten Figueroa three times when they were amateurs.
This time, Figueroa was the victor, gaining a 12-round split decision in Carson, California, to retain his championship.
A costly victory
Figueroa again successfully defended his title on August 16, 2014, this time against Mexico’s Daniel Estrada.
The match was close through eight rounds until an accidental head butt opened a cut across the bridge of Figueroa’s nose and left eye, unleashing his trademark aggression.
Fearing that the referee would soon stop the fight, Figueroa came out strong in the ninth, and landed a barrage of punches that left Estrada struggling before the fight was stopped, giving Figueroa a TKO victory.
The cut across above Figueroa’s eye, however, became infected after the fight, preventing him from immediately defending his championship.
He was stripped of the title in November 2014, and declared a “champion in recess.”
A successful step up to 140 pounds
Figueroa made his debut at 140 pounds against Scotsman Ricky Burns in a Premier Boxing Champions bout that aired live on CBS from Hidalgo, Texas, on May 9, 2015.
Fighting before a partisan crowd near his hometown, Figueroa engaged Burns almost right from the opening bell.
Figueroa did most of his damage in close quarters, nailing Burns repeatedly with shots to the body and head.
Burns repeatedly tried to slow Figueroa by tying up the Texas native, but he had a point deducted from his score in both the eighth and 11th rounds for excessive holding.
The action-packed 12-round bout went the distance, and Figueroa won by unanimous decision to push his record to 25-0-1.