After losing all five of his amateur fights against Belmontes, Figueroa (23-0-1, 17 KOs), of Weslaco, Texas, got his revenge in his first world title defense, outpointing Belmontes (19-4, 5 KOs), of Corpus Christi, Texas, by the scores of 118-110, 116-112 and 113-115.
“He gave me more than trouble,’’ Figueroa said. “He wouldn’t make a fight out of it. I’m sorry to the fans. It was more of a sparring match than a fight. I prepared so much and this was the outcome.
“He almost made me cry again but of laughter saying he was going to beat me. I prepared well. I came 100 percent. I knew he was going to run. My hands are a little sore but nothing bad, nothing crazy. Now take my time off. I have been training since January. But it is up to Al Haymon.”
Said Belmontes: “Honestly, I thought I won the fight. I thought I landed the clearer more effective shots. I don’t fight like that (running) but sometimes I pay attention to the fans when they are booing so I went inside and fought like a Mexican warrior. He couldn’t handle my jab. He couldn’t’ handle me on the outside. I thought I won the fight.”
In the featured match on SHOWTIME EXTREME, talented, world-ranked junior middleweight Jermall Charlo (18-0, 14 KOs), of Houston, dominated Albuquerque’s Hector Munoz (22-13-1, 14 KOs) en route to a fourth-round TKO.
“I just tried very hard,’’ said Charlo after the one-sided proceedings were stopped. “Two camps in, I was hungrier than ever. I am hungrier than any fighter. I want to go on to bigger thing so badly. I credit Munoz for taking the fight. He showed a lot of spirit. But I had him. I’m so ready for the next level. I need it.’’
In other SHO Extreme results, undefeated Joseph Diaz Jr. (10-0, 7 KOs) won all six rounds in a decision over veteran Luis Maldonado (38-12-1, 29 KOs), of Calexico, Calif., and unbeaten super welterweight Terrell Gausha of Cleveland improved to 9-0 (five KOs) with an eight-round shutout over Charles Whittaker (40-15-2), of Winter Haven, Fla.
The SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING tripleheader will re-air this week as follows:
Tomorrow, Sunday, April 27, 9 a.m. ET/PT SHOWTIME
Tuesday, April 29, at 10 p.m. ET/PT SHO Extreme
Saturday’s three-fight telecast will be available at SHOWTIME ON DEMAND beginning Sunday, April 27.
Brian Kenny hosted the SHOWTIME telecast, with Mauro Ranallo calling the action, Hall of Fame analyst Al Bernstein and middleweight contender Danny Jacobs commentating and Jim Gray reporting. In Spanish, Alejandro Luna called the blow-by-blow with former world champion Raul Marquez serving as color commentator. The executive producer of SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING is David Dinkins Jr. with Bob Dunphy directing.