Top Rank Boxing on ESPN Results: Hooker Retains Title, Stops Saucedo in 7th


By: Michael Kane

Oklahoma will continue to wait for their first world champion since Sean O’Grady in 1981. Alex Saucedo was hoping to become Oklahoma’s second ever champion but fell short in his bid against the champion Maurice Hooker.

4102 fans were in the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City to see if their man, Saucedo, could do it. Once again Hooker was on enemy territory, he won the WBO Junior Welterweight title in June when he travelled to Manchester to take on hometown favourite Terry Flanagan for the vacant title, winning by split decision.

There was to be no decision after this fight. Saucedo started well and landed a big right hand. This put Hooker on the canvas in the second, sending his fans into ecstasy. Hooker was bloodied but Saucedo didn’t finish him.


Photo Credit: Mikey Williams/Top Rank

Moving on to the 5th, Saucedo had Hooker against the ropes but the champ came back in the closing stages of the round.

In the 6th Saucedo’s eye was starting to look swollen.

The fight was over in the 7th as Hooker took control of the fight, Saucedo suffered a standing eight count after Hooker landed a right hand. Hooker went on to stop Saucedo later in the round, winning by TKO.

“Alex is a great fighter. He came to fight, and I came to fight,and I went right at him,” Hooker (25-0-3, 17 KOs) said. “I knew the first couple of rounds would be tough, but eventually it would be my time to take over.”

Saucedo (28-1, 18 KOs) said, “He’s a champion for a reason. Now I am going to rest, enjoy my family, and come back stronger. I gave it my very best in the ring.”

In the other big fight on the card, NABF Welterweight champion Egidijus Kavaliauskas (21-0, 17 KOs) defended his strap against undefeated Roberto Arriaza (17-1, 13 KOs).

It took the Lithuanian 3 rounds to put the Nicaraguan, Arriaza away to retain his NABF title and add the WBO Inter-continental title.

Kavaliauskas now wants a shot at World champion Terence Crawford, who was ringside.

“I want the best in the welterweight division, and the best guy right now is Terence Crawford.” Said Kavaliauskas. “I am ready for that fight next.”

Arriaza said, “I know I had him in trouble. I was the one who was dominating and was in control of the fight. I’m sure that I was going to finish him within six rounds, but he surprised me with a punch to the back of the ear and then connected with me while I was on the canvas.”

In other results:

Super Lightweight: Cletus Seldin (22-1, 18 KOs), KO 1, :26, Nelson Lara (17-11-4, 9 KOs).

* Left hook to the body put Lara down for the count

Super Bantamweight: Jonathan Guzman (23-1, 22 KOs), unanimous decision, 10 rounds, Roberto Castaneda (23-11-1, 16 KOs). Scores: 99-91 3X.

Middleweight: Tyler Howard (16-0, 11 KOs), KO 1, 1:30, Isiah Seldon (12-2-1, 4 KOs).

Light Heavyweight: Trevor McCumby (25-0, 18 KOs), unanimous decision, 8 rounds, Felipe Romero (20-16-1, 14 KOs). Scores: 78-73, 78-72, 77-73.

Lightweight: Albert Bell (13-0, 5 KOs),TKO 6, 3:00, Carlos Padilla (16-9-1, 10 KOs).

Bantamweight: Aaron Morales (5-0, 3 KOs), unanimous decision, 6 rounds, Francisco Lapizco (8-9, 2 KOs). Scores: 59-55 3X.

Super Welterweight: Paul Kroll (2-0, 2 KOs ) TKO 2, :13, Antonio Wattell (1-6-1, 1 KO).

Super Bantamweight: Rasheen Brown (2-0, 0 KOs), majority decision, 4 rounds, Sebastian Baltazar (1-3, 0 KOs). Scores: 38-38, 39-37 2X.

Lightweight: John Rincon (1-0, 1 KO) KO 1, 1:24, Emanuel Williams (0-1).

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