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Maurice Hooker defeats Alex Saucedo – RESULTS

By Jeff Aranow: WBO light welterweight champion Maurice Hooker (25-0-3, 17 KOs) used his height and reach advantage to defeat previously unbeaten #1 WBO contender Alex Saucedo (28-1, 18 KOs) last Friday night on ESPN from the Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.


Hooker dropped the 24-year-old Saucedo in the 7th round with a hard shot, and then finished him off moments later. The official time of the stoppage was at 1:36 of round 7.

Earlier in the fight, Saucedo knocked the 29-year-old Hooker down with a right to the head in the 2nd round. Hooker, 5’11”, got back to his feet and finished the round strong in landing some punishing punches flush to the head of Saucedo. Hooker couldn’t miss with his big power


In round 3 through 7, Saucedo pressed the attack against the lanky Hooker, but he paid for it by getting hit with a lot of clean right hand from the Texas native, who did well against Saucedo’s aggressive style of fighting. This was a fighting style that Hooker was well suited for compared to his last contest against former World Boxing Organization lightweight champion Terry Flanagan. Hooker had to deal with the boxing style from Flanagan, and that made things a lot more complicated.

Saucedo suffered a cut over his left eye, and that made things tough for him to try and fight through the blood. There’s no question that the scare tissue over Saucedo’s left eye was a product of his last fight against Leonardo Zappavigna last June. Saucedo stopped Zappavigna in the 7th round, but he was almost knocked out himself during the fight. The way that Saucedo struggled t beat Zappavigna suggested that he would have problems when he got inside the ring with the hard hitting Hooker.

“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,” Saucedo said.

The loss for Saucedo is a crushing blow to Top Rank promoter Bob Arum, who was hoping to match him against World Boxing Council light welterweight champion Jose Ramirez in a unification fight in 2019. Arum can still match Saucedo against Ramirez, but it won’t be nearly as interesting as it would have if both guys were unbeaten. At this point, it might be better for Saucedo to get a few confidence builder type of fights under his belt before he attempts to tackle any of the champions at 140. You’d hate to see Saucedo thrown to the wolves against Ramirez right now.

Other boxing results on last night’s card:

#2 WBO welterweight contender Egidijus “The Mean Machine” Kavaliauskas (21-0, 17 KOs) destroyed Roberto Arriaza (17-1, 13 KOs) by 3rd round knockout.

The fight was competitive until the moment Kavaliauskas, 30, knocked Arriaza down in the 3rd round with a big shot. It wasn’t a mismatch. It was a case of Kavaliauskas catching the 28-year-old Arriaza with a big shot that he didn’t see coming.

The 2-time Olympian Kavaliauskas could be the next opponent for WBO 147 lb champion Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford in 2019. Both guys are with Top Rank, and the word is that Kavaliauskas will be next for Crawford followed by former WBO light welterweight champion Mike Alvarado in the second half of next year.

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

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