Vargas defeats Magsayo in 12 decisive rounds!
Rey Vargas of Mexico became the two-division world champion Saturday night as he rose from a knock-and-box and advanced to the WBC Featherweight title against Mark Magsayo by division in a single match. The drama was broadcast live on SHOWTIME from the Alamodome in San Antonio during a Premier Boxing Champions event.
“I am speechless,” Vargas said emotionally after the battle. “I worked hard for this. I want to thank God, my family, my coach Nacho Beristain. The first title I won, I loved it, but this one is special. This win is for me.”
“It was his day, no problem, I’ll come back stronger, I’m disappointed but I gave my best,” Magsayo said.
The Fight of the Unknowns is a fast-paced showdown throughout, with both men keeping the momentum at different times but never giving in to their staunch opponents. Despite his advantage in height and reach, Vargas (36-0.22 KOs) was ready to take on Magsayo (24-1, 16 KOs) and was able to use his superior operation to take on Magsayo. contested the referee’s card decision with two scores 115-112 versus a score of 114-113 for Magsayo.
The only world champion from the Philippines to participate in this bout, Magsayo was able to land multiple powerful hits on Vargas, who knocked them down well and ensured a return fire with a snappy attack. own. This success is reflected in the punch stats, as Vargas out landed Magsayo 196 to 132 according to CompuBox.
“I just kept moving forward and rejecting him no matter what,” Vargas said. “All that matters to me is that in the end the victory has come.”
Now a two-tier world champion, Vargas showed he can recover from adversity, as Magsayo nearly turned the tide of the fight by landing a stealthy right arm late in the 9th round that knocked Vargas down. fall
“It’s not a power punch,” Vargas said. “It’s something that happens more because of the way I move. We were able to bounce back and come back strong.”
Magsayo said: “When I took him down, straight punch, he did his duty in the ring, running. “I applied pressure and did what we did in the gym, but he’s taller and he’s the man of today.”
Vargas showed his veteran mettle rising up and through the shaky 10th round to come back and scan rounds 11 and 12 on all three of the referee’s cards to win.
“It was a good and interesting battle,” Vargas said. “We feel comfortable throughout. I had good technique. We only went in circles once and we got the expected result.”
“I will rest and watch the game and I will train to fight again and will correct my mistakes for next time,” Magsayo said. “Thank you to all my fans in the Philippines. I did my best and will come back stronger.”
After the match, Vargas set his sights on a potential unification bout against four-division world champion and reigning WBA Featherweight champion Leo Santa Cruz, a potentially huge clash between Mexico and Mexico. .
“Now I want unity,” Vargas said. “I want to fight Leo Santa Cruz. We talked about it with my team and I’m ready. “
In the co-main event, former world champion Brandon “The Heartbreaker” Figueroa (23-1-1, 18 KOs) returned to victory with Carlos Castro’s dominant 6th round TKO (27-2, 12 KOs) ) ) in their Featherweight title elimination round.
Competing in his first featherweight bout and first action since dropping a tight decision in the Match of the Year 2021 against Stephen Fulton Jr., Figueroa showcased her prowess at 126 pounds by going for a run. beat Castro midway through the third round. Using his traditional bruising strike style, Figueroa landed with a left-hand detour that injured Castro and eventually sent him to the carpet during the track (see highlights HERE).
Figueroa said: “I know Carlos Casto as a cunning fighter. “I had to be patient. I know how to put pressure on him, after the heavy punches I got tired and had to step back. I know he was hurt. and I’ve got him, and I have to put more pressure on him. I took him out with a kindness cut with my left hand and I got him, I just threw punches at each other and I took him down.”
A veteran who also debuted in featherweight, Castro was able to use his ring IQ to weather the early storm from Figueroa. His short hooks on the inside and stiff uppercuts kept Figueroa from overwhelming him in the third round and helped him get through the first rounds.
Despite being shot back, Figueroa remained undaunted and continued to stick to his game plan and bring about the fight with Castro. In the sixth half, Figueroa broke through again with a series of shots, including a short, violent right hook that stunned Castro.
“Carlos Castro has a lot of heart, he’s a proven fighter in the ring and I know it’s going to be difficult to get him out of there,” Figueroa said. “I hurt him, just waiting for that shot to reach my body, once I got him clean, I knew he was injured. I gathered my punches again.”
Figueroa took advantage of this moment and unleashed an unfinished attack that made referee Mark Nelson jump in to save, ending the 2:11 half (see highlight HERE).
“I’m pretty proud of myself,” says Figueroa. “I know there’s a lot of work ahead, especially if I’m fighting the winner of the main event. I have to learn my fighting style and get back to the gym.”
In the TV show’s opening game, undefeated rising star Frank Martin (16-0, 12 KOs) showed a full complement of skills that have made him one of the hottest rising players in the world. most mentioned in the 135-pound class, when he serves. methodical destruction on his way to stopping Jackson Mariñez (19-3, 7 KOs) in the 10th and final round.
After the first two innings, the Martin coached by Derrick James began to use his superior foot speed to land himself with his lethal left hand to the head and torso.
“I’m ready to go whether I get a knockout or not,” said Martin, steady friend and promoter, world champion in the heavyweight division Errol Spence Jr, as he watched the win. and later told SHOWTIME’s Jim Gray that he is expected to face WBO titleholder Terence Crawford in an undisputed title fight in the heavier weight division later this year. “Me and Derrick James worked hard in the gym. It’s just a matter of me being patient and not worrying.”
Mariñez was able to take advantage of her size in the early innings to keep Martin honest, securing a successful landing against Martin’s defense.
Mariñez said: “I feel great. “I am very comfortable inside the ring. It would have been a completely different result if I had had more than eight days to prepare. “
Mariñez, a late substitute to face Martin, failed to combine effectively and too often relied on single punches. Martin is able to slowly take out Mariñez with a steady body attack, launching 53 shots there throughout the action. He also holds the advantage in both the long throw (505-411) and the ground punch (160-106).
Martin said: “I’m just an accurate puncher. “We had to be really outside of the hook, I duplicated two and tried to get inside with the hook.”
After the first half of the game was closed, Martin began to withdraw in the following rounds and finally broke through and hurt Mariñez late in the 9th round. He connected with a series of vicious lefties that sent Mariñez staggered. staggered, before a subsequent attack left Mariñez on the rug in the neutral corner.
“The knockdown in the ninth round changed the tone of the fight,” said Mariñez. “Perhaps I could have been more careful. These things happen in boxing, and you just have to be ready to roll with the punches. He has power, and so do I.”
Mariñez was able to hold his ground and survive the round, but Martin wasted little time restarting his offensive behavior in round 10. He sped up the pace from the start and delivered the blows. like rain on Mariñez, who was pinned to a rope, until Mariñez hit the canvas. again and referee Rafael Ramos jumped in to end the game with 30 seconds left to half time (see highlight HERE).
“I was on top of him when I was injured, I was hungry, he was in deep water so I had to get him out of there,” Martin said. “I’m right there with the top men with the light weight, letting me sit at the table with them, whenever, I’m ready. I will sit down with my team and hope to achieve something big. At the end of the day, we won it all.”
Ahead of the TV show, matches streamed live on the YouTube channel SHOWTIME SPORTS® featuring undefeated opponents and rising star Rashidi Ellis (24-0, 15 KOs) scoring two kills en route to the makeover. first round of late substitute Jose Marrufo (13-11-2, 1 KO). Ellis dropped Marrufo twice in the first two minutes of the game before a subsequent attack forced referee Ellis Johnson to halt the game 2:17 at half time.
Additional streaming saw San Antonio-born Ramon Cardenas (21-1, 10 KOs) make a unanimous decision over Venezuela’s Michell Banquez (20-2, 14 KOs) after 10 weight innings . In a near-controversial skirmish mainly on the inside, Cardenas nodded with the scores 97-93 twice and 96-94.