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Figueroa Wears Down Magsayo, Claims Interim Title: Full Card Review

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Brandon Figueroa (24-1-1, 18 KOs) proved to be too much for Mark Magsayo (24-2, 16 KOs) over the twelve round duration last night and became the WBC “interim” featherweight champion in the process. He is now in position to challenge Rey Vargas (36-1, 22 KOs) for the full WBC title in a fight that will most likely take place later this year. Boxing has been delivering on a weekly basis so far in 2023, and this week was no exception.

The main event was a tale of two halves. Magsayo started out fast, winning four out of the first five rounds on my scorecard. After that, it was all Figueroa though. His investment in the body attack paid off and Magsayo faded as the fight progressed. Magsayo was deducted points for holding on two separate occasions (rounds 8 and 11). The volume and accuracy of Figueroa really wore down Magsayo and forced him to drop to a knee a few times late in the fight. Though I thought one or two could have been called knockdowns due to accumulation, there were no official knockdowns. Figueroa was victorious via unanimous decision (117-109 x2, 118-108). The right guy won, but the cards did seem a bit wide. I had it 115-111 in favor of Figueroa.

Armando Resendiz (14-1, 10 KOs) changed the trajectory of his boxing career last night. He came in the underdog and the opponent in what was supposed to be a confidence boosting comeback for former unified 154lb champion Jarrett Hurd (24-3, 16). However, it was no confidence booster for the former ruler of the junior middleweight division. Resendiz came out looking to make a statement, and he did just that taking the fight to Hurd. Hurd started to gain momentum in rounds three, four, and five, but after that, Resendiz took the initiative once again and began to separate himself. The fight was stopped just a few seconds into the tenth and final round. Hurd suffered a brutal cut to his lip and the doctor did not allow the fight to continue upon examination.

Just a few years ago, Jarrett Hurd was one of the most menacing forces in all of boxing. Unfortunately, his style has not aged well over time and he is not the guy that he once was. I never like to write guys off; however, at this point, it seems like he and his team have a decision to make regarding his boxing career moving forward. I am a fan of Hurd and was excited to see him return, but it was tough to watch him take the punishment he did, and I’m not sure what is next for him at this moment.

The opening fight on the broadcast introduced us to a potential new star of the middleweight division. 19-year-old Elijah Garcia (14-0, 12 KOs) picked up an impressive fourth round stoppage over world ranked contender Amilcar Vidal (16-1, 12 KOs). Vidal was strong in the first two rounds, and it was up in the air regarding whether or not this was one step too far in the progression of Garcia. Though he got bloodied up a bit, his confidence never waivered and he broke down Vidal in the fourth round and closed the show. He is definitely someone to keep an eye on and could be that young breakout star the middleweight division has been desperately needing.

The YouTube prelims featured three fights that all deserve mention as well. 2012 Olympian Terrell Gausha (23-3-1, 12 KOs) knocked out Brandyn Lynch in round nine after dropping him three times. The fight probably should have been stopped after the first knockdown. Lynch’s legs were gone and he was just a sitting duck after that and the veteran Gausha capitalized on it.

Travon Marshall (8-0, 7 KOs) has made major waves in the sport already in 2023 and is my frontrunner for prospect of the year. He was in against a game veteran in Justin DeLoach (19-6, 10 KOs), and that was evident as the two traded big shots in the opening rounds. Marshall did what all great young fighters do and found a way to finish off the more experienced fighter. The 22-year-old has a bright future ahead of him, and I can’t wait to see how his career unfolds.

Samuel Teah (19-4-1, 8 KOs) came into this fight on the “B-side”, but did not fight like one. He controlled the action throughout against Enriko Gogokhia (13-1-2, 8 KOs), and handed him his first defeat as a professional. Teah was awarded a knockdown in the opening round, and though I thought it was a slip, it didn’t have an impact on the scorecards as he went on to win a wide unanimous decision (78-73 x2, 79-72).

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Jack Kelly

Jack Kelly