The former unified 122-pound champion captures the WBC Interim 126-pound strap after grinding out grueling points win over Mark Magsayo, topping an all-action card Saturday night on PBC on SHOWTIME.
Brandon “The Heartbreaker” Figueroa feels settled. With the move to featherweight, the 26-year-old from Weslaco, Texas, no longer has to deflate himself to make weight.
That added strength showed Saturday night when Figueroa dominated former WBC featherweight world champion Mark “Magnifico” Magsayo via unanimous 12-round decision for the vacant interim WBC featherweight title Saturday night atop a Premier Boxing Champions event on SHOWTIME from the Toyota Arena in Ontario, California.
Figueroa (24-1-1, 18 KOs) won by scores of 117-109 (twice) and 118-108. His victory sets up a showdown with WBC Featherweight World Champion Rey Vargas.
“Man, I just went out there and wanted it and took the fight right to him,” said Figueroa, the former unified super bantamweight world champion. “I wanted this fight so bad. He came back a little but once I hit him with a body shot it affected him and I put pressure, pressure, pressure on him.
Figueroa, 26, came out as a southpaw, and switched back and forth in the first. It seemed to take Magsayo by surprise. He was on the defensive, backing up against the larger, taller Figueroa. Magsayo’s counterpunching was not that effective early on, though that changed as the fight progressed.
Once Magsayo, 27, found his punching range, he was able to get inside Figueroa’s reach and attack with counter left hooks to the body and the head. The fight was primarily fought in the pocket. The times Magsayo was most effective came outside of the pocket, in the middle of the ring.
Figueroa alternated between fighting as a southpaw and conventional. Both worked. By the middle rounds, he was attacking downhill at Magsayo, who often held when Figueroa neared. Referee Thomas Taylor repeatedly warned Magsayo about the holding. With 2:29 left in the eighth round, he took a point away.
Magsayo slowed down over the course of the second half of the bout. Figueroa sported a cut over his right eye in the ninth but continued to work, ripping Magsayo with rights to the body. Magsayo fought back in spurts but appeared fatigued. A right to the body and a left hook upstairs stung Magsayo late in the tenth.
With 1:18 left in that frame, Taylor again took a point from Magsayo for holding. In the last minute of the round, Magsayo was hanging on trying to survive. He fell to a knee, but Thomas ruled it no knockdown.
In the 11th, Magsayo tried keeping Figueroa off of him, though he couldn’t in the last half of the round. As the final seconds of the fight ticked away, Figueroa stalked Magsayo. Magsayo fell for a third time in the last minute, though again, Thomas ruled it a slip.
“The holding didn’t deter my offense,” Figueroa said. “I can fight every style, backwards, forward, lefty, righty. It doesn’t matter. I felt strong. I just don’t stop. I don’t get tired and I’m relentless and I came forward and I wanted the fight. Yeah, whoever wants to fight me, I’ll fight. I want to fight for a world title. I just want to give the fans the fights they want.”
Catching our breath after that all-out slugfest!— SHOWTIME Boxing (@ShowtimeBoxing) March 5, 2023
Armando Reséndiz threw 780 punches en route to a 10th-round TKO over Hurd#FigueroaMagsayo is NEXT on @Showtime #HurdResendiz pic.twitter.com/3Jl4tRrPmP
Armando Resendiz shocks Jarrett Hurd via ninth-round stoppage
Few expected this outcome—aside from Armando Resendiz’s family, friends and corner. The 24-year-old Mexican middleweight was expected to be a comeback bout for a Jarett Hurd who was ending a 21-month layoff and attempting to settle into the middleweight division.
Resendiz, apparently, had other ideas. He smothered Hurd with a nonstop assault, using the same aggressive approach that has been Hurd’s calling card to wear down the former unified 154-pound world champion. And Resendiz never stopped coming forward, showing grit as he In pulled off the biggest win of his career, stopping Hurd in the ninth round of a scheduled 10-rounder when Hurd could not continue due to a severe cut on the inside of his mouth.
“I was visualizing this fight for so long, how I was going to win this fight,” Resendiz said. “I want to thank my trainer and my promoters and especially God for helping me to win this fight tonight. It was all about heart, but I know I can be even better and you’ll see what I mean in my next fight.”
Resendiz (14-1, 10 KOs) took a firm grasp of the fight in the sixth round. Through five, Resendiz and the 32-year-old Hurd (24-3, 16 KOs) had each landed 142 punches. They fought each other in close quarters, attached at the forehead. Resendiz was able to withstand Hurd’s power, and his aggressiveness had Hurd backing up in the sixth.
Neither of them was able to get out of the way of the other. Resendiz chopped away at Hurd’s body, while Hurd, who has now lost consecutive fights at middleweight, was fighting behind a powerful jab and landing a potent right uppercut.
“I told everyone I was willing to go to war, I’m Mexican, after all. It was a strong, physical fight just like we expected. The results speak for themselves,” Resendiz said.
“The sparring was clearly the big thing here. I sparred with Vergil Ortiz, who gave me great sparring and there were other sparring partners who gave me great sparring to help this fight be so great for me.”
By the seventh, Hurd appeared to have lost the snap on his punches. The exchanges were not as prolonged. Instead, it was Resendiz carrying the fight, backing Hurd into the ropes, hurting him with straight shots to the head. Hurd took a pile of punishment in the last minute of the ninth.
As the 10th was about to start, the ringside doctor took a deep look at Hurd and determined he could not continue.
“I knew this was going to be a tough, toe-to-to fight based on our styles,” Hurd said. “But I only had to make it one more round. I wish I could have finished it, but my lip was cut too bad. So, congratulations to Resendiz.
“I definitely wish I could have continued. At no point was I hurt at all in that fight, but I have to respect what the doctors say and there’s nothing I can do about it. I have to go back and watch the fight. It felt like there was a lot of back and forth and that I was winning the early rounds and that he was coming back in the middle rounds. But what can I say? I had a long layoff and I guess it showed tonight, but I’ll be back.”
Elijah Garcia looks sensational in stopping Amilcar Vidal in four
It is a little hard to believe Elijah Garcia is 19. But when you realize that the middleweight turned pro at 16, it makes sense. Garcia was making a major move up in his young career by taking on unbeaten rising contender Amilcar Vidal in the first TV fight of the SHOWTIME Championship Boxing card.
He didn’t disappoint.
In fact, he probably surprised everyone, maybe even himself, when the 6-foot southpaw stopped Vidal at 2:17 of the fourth round.
Garcia showed a plethora of championship-quality traits, including a maturity well beyond his age.
“This is what everyone dreams of, so this isn’t a surprise,” Garcia said. “This is what I worked for since I turned pro so we’re going to keep moving forward one step at a time.
“I stay ready and mentally I’m strong. I know mentally I might have lost the first couple of rounds, but I was breaking him down. He started backing up. He’s a great opponent. No disrespect to him. If it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t be here right now. My dad right here is the one that makes it happen. Blood, sweat and tears.”
The end began when Garcia landed a power left around 1:40 left in the fourth. Garcia followed with a right hook that shook Vidal just inside of a minute left in the round.
Sensing his opponent was seriously hurt, Garcia pounced, pinning Vidal against the ropes and unleashing a series of combinations that forced Vidal down on all fours with 43 seconds left. Referee Jack Reiss wisely stepped in and waved it over.
“I caught him and I finished him,” Garcia said. “I’m not sure what I hurt him with, but I know I hurt him and for me being 19 I have the maturity to tell if they’re hurt or not. I might become a champion before I’m 21 or 22. I might be ahead of schedule.”
WOW! WHAT A CRACK!— SHOWTIME Boxing (@ShowtimeBoxing) March 5, 2023
Unbeaten Travon Marshall scores the thunderous third-round KO over Deloach Dock
Tune into the #FigueroaMagsayo Prelims LIVE: https://t.co/P0yALPP9Tu#MarshallDeloachDock pic.twitter.com/1JbOuqHffn
U.S. Olympian and super welterweight contender Terrell Gausha (23-3-1, 12 KOs) scored three quick knockdowns to overpower and stop Brandyn Lynch (12-2-1, 9 KOs) in the ninth round. Plus, sensational welterweight prospect Travon Marshall (8-0, 7 KOs) scored a thunderous third-round knockout over veteran Justin DeLoach (19-6, 10 KOs) and SHOBOX veteran Samuel Teah (19-4-1, 8 KOs) rode a first round knockdown to a unanimous decision victory over previously undefeated super lightweight Enriko Gogokhia (13-1-2, 8 KOs).
For a closer look at Figueroa vs Magsayo, check out our fight night page.