There’s been a change in plans.
Last week, a rematch between Stephen Fulton and Brandon Figueroa was reportedly in the works for February 25. But now, Fulton has reportedly agreed to terms to put his unified super bantamweight titles on the line against Naoya Inoue in May while Figueroa is finalizing a March 4 matchup against Mark Magsayo.
Fulton is undefeated in all 21 of his professional fights. He most recently beat Daniel Roman by unanimous decision in June. Before that, he took home the victory over Figueroa by majority decision.
Prior to the rematch being reported, Fulton was rumored to face fresh undisputed bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue, but those got briefly tabled. That Friday, Inoue announced that he was vacating his four belts to move up to super bantamweight.
Inoue’s move likely forced the change in plans.
Inoue, who became the first Asian boxer to win the undisputed title in the three or four-belt era, became the four-belt champion by dominating Paul Butler. He said there was nothing left for him to do in that division.
If he is victorious against Fulton, Inoue would become a four-weight champion.
Figueroa would have gotten a shot at revenge against Fulton, who took his WBC strap in the majority decision win. Now, he will instead face recently dethroned Magsayo, who is coming off of a loss against Vargas from July.
Vargas, who still holds the WBC featherweight title, is moving up to 130 pounds to face O’Shaquie Foster for the vacant junior lightweight title, which was vacated by Shakur Stevenson in September. He fights on February 11.
Vargas said during Wednesday’s virtual press conference that he’s not sure what weight he’ll fight in after facing Foster. If Vargas vacates the WBC featherweight title before Figueroa-Magsayo happens, the two could fight for that belt.