A competitive fight between two former world champions concluded with a unanimous decision victory for Brandon Figueroa as he wins the interim WBC featherweight title over Mark Magsayo at the Toyota Arena in Ontario California. Two judges scored the bout 117-109 and one judge turned in a score of 118-108 for the native of Weslaco, Texas.
In the first few rounds, Magsayo was scoring well with power shots and counterpunches when Figueroa attempted to work the body. However Figueroa would not stop coming forward with his offensive output and eventually wore down Magsayo in the second half of the fight. The energy from Magsayo noticeably faded in round seven as he started to clinch and lean forward on Figueroa which forced two points being taken away in round 8 and round 11. In addition to the clinching, Magsayo had fallen to the canvas on a few occasions due to his lack of energy in the last few rounds. While Figueroa was limited to 54 punches per round, his work in the second half of the fight was more effective to wearing down the former WBC featherweight champion.
Figueroa attributed his victory to his level of activity. “I just went out there and wanted it and took the fight right to him,” said Figueroa. “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.”
“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.”
Magsayo was discouraged at the decision. “I thought the fight was much closer than the scores indicated,” Magsayo said. “I don’t know how to explain the scorecards or the point deductions. It’s very disappointing.”
Before the bout took place, Magsayo did have some issues making weight. He was over the featherweight limit in the initial weigh-in before getting down to 126 pounds. This is Magsayo’s second consecutive loss, and he made the decision to campaign in the super featherweight division after this bout.
“I plan to move up to 130 pounds after this fight,” he said.
Figueroa will now look forward to facing the WBC champion Rey Vargas later this year as that seems to be the next opponent for him. However, he is welcome to any challenge that is available in the division.
“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.”
Cover photo by Esther Lin of Showtime