It should have been his moment alone to celebrate following a win as the headlining act in his hometown. Instead, Brandon Figueroa found himself sharing the stage in the immediate aftermath of a 4th round knockout of Javier Chacon to defend his interim 122-pound title this past August, which aired live on FS1 from Edinburg, Texas. The unbeaten 22-year from nearby Weslaco barely had a chance to soak in the ambiance before being joined in the ring by fellow undefeated junior featherweight Stephen Fulton, who claimed a win in the evening’s chief support.
“I know it’s part of business. I didn’t care,” Figueroa (20-0, 15KOs) told BoxingScene.com of the arrangement at the time. “It’s our part to promote. I’ll be more than glad to fight Fulton, fighting for a world title in 2020 whenever Al Haymon is ready to make the fight happen. Al always says has all the respect in the world for me, for never backing down from a fight.
“I never back down from any fight. It’s a fight that will come and I can’t wait for it.”
The 22-year old Texan will have to wait at least until after his next assignment, a Nov. 23 title defense versus Mexico’s former titleholder Julio Ceja (32-4, 28KOs). The bout comes on the televised undercard of a Fox Sports Pay-Per-View topped by a heavyweight title fight rematch between Deontay Wilder and Luis Ortiz, marking Figueroa’s first performance on that platform and in Las Vegas with the event taking place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.
“I’m looking for the fight and the opportunity to fight in Las Vegas,” admits Figueroa. “It’s actually my second time there this year. I was there in July to watch my brother (former lightweight titlist) Omar Figueroa who suffered his first loss (versus welterweight contender Yordenis Ugas). “Right now, it’s just another fight lined up but I’ll start feeling the buzz during fight week. Right now, I’m just calm and collected.”
The approach has allowed him to remain perfect thus far, and also confident that he will find himself in 2020 in all of the big fights his fans—and even critics—demand of him.
“I don’t know what the future has in store for me, and I definitely don’t want to look past Julio Ceja,” notes Figueroa. “God willing and I get the win, then hopefully after this fight I get the bigger names and the bigger fights. There’s Guillermo Rigondeaux, Daniel Roman, Emanuel Navarrete… and of course, if he wants the fight and Al Haymon is ready to make it happen, there will be Stephen Fulton as well.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox