Former junior welterweight title challenger Alex Saucedo faces former prospect, Sonny Fredrickson, in the main event of a Top Rank Boxing event on June 30, 2020, in Las Vegas. These two fighters were supposed to square off last April 25, 2020, in a non-televised bout on the undercard of the Naoya Inoue vs Jonhriel Casimero at the Mandalay Bay Events Center but was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Alex Saucedo is a former title challenger from Oklahoma City who was born in Chihuahua, Mexico. He turned pro at the age of 17 and was considered one of the best prospects in the 140-pound division. Saucedo fought his way to contendership when he knocked out Leonardo Zappavigna but he was knocked out in his first attempt at a world title and suffered his first professional defeat. He bounced back with a knockout win over Rod Salka and is looking to continue his march towards redemption on June 30th.
The 26-year old Saucedo stands 5-10 tall with a reach of 72 inches and fights out of the orthodox stance. Saucedo has boxed for a total of 118 rounds with 30 fights and has a record of 29-1 with 19 knockouts (63.33% knockout percentage) with his only loss a 7th round TKO defeat at the hands of Maurice Hooker when he challenged for the WBO super lightweight title on November 16, 2018.
Odds from BetOnline as of 06/29/2020
Sonny Fredrickson was also a former prospect. He was one of the fastest rising young fighters at 140-pounds and had entered the WBA rankings at #9 when he suffered his first career defeat. He bounced back nicely with three straight victories but in his last bout, he dropped a majority decision to an unheralded opponent which further put him down in the super lightweight ladder. Fredrickson was an accomplished amateur who had a record of 120-8 with 60 knockouts. He was a former two-time Ohio State Junior Olympics champion and five-time Toledo Golden Gloves champion.
Fredrickson is 6-1 tall with a reach of 76 inches and the 25-year old fights out of the orthodox stance. Fredrickson has boxed for a total of 95 rounds with 23 bouts and he has a record of 21-2 with 14 knockouts or a 60.87 knockout percentage. His first loss was dealt by former prospect Shohjahon Ergashev on January 12, 2018, and he bounced back with three consecutive victories before losing his second bout to Samuel Teah on November 14th of the same year when he challenged for the USBA super lightweight title.
Analysis of Fighters
Saucedo is a good fighter but he is still learning and isn’t in his prime yet. He hits hard and we’ve seen him use his power to stop notable fighters like Abner Lopez, Leonardo Zappavigna, and Rod Salka. Against Zappavigna, he proved that he can weather a storm and still put on a show. However, we saw his lack of defense in his next fight as he got knocked out by Maurice Hooker.
Saucedo got into a war against Leonardo Z but he ended up winning that firefight. But against Hooker who is a harder puncher than Zappavigna, Saucedo’s defense or his lack of it showed and the accumulation of blows led to the defeat. It was a sad defeat as Saucedo was the one who drew first blood when he dropped Hooker in the second round. However, Hooker beat the count and was able to recover.
The champ used his superior reach to keep Saucedo at bay. Utilizing long jabs and short right hands, Hooker took over the fight, and as soon as Saucedo wanted to brawl, it was a wild fight. Hooker outlander Saucedo 174 to 133 in total punches and if Fredrickson can do the same, this could turn out to be an interesting fight.
Fredrickson was on the rise in the WBA rankings and was expected to figure in the 140-pound title race after Terence Crawford’s move to welterweight. However, he suffered a devastating knockout loss to fellow prospect Shohjahon Ergashev who had more punching power than him. He won three fights after that but Fredrickson lost to Samuel Teah via majority decision for his second career defeat.
Fredrickson hasn’t been able to translate his success against quality opposition and that could be a problem against Saucedo who has fought much better opponents in his career. I think Fredrickson has the talent and he has the size to be a contender in the 140-pound division but unless he proves that he can beat quality opposition, he will remain a fringe contender.
This is a crossroads fight for Fredrickson because a loss here will put him a level down. I expect him to use his length against Saucedo and if he did his homework, he should try to fight his opponent the way Hooker did. On the other hand, Saucedo is the bigger punches here and he will have to defend himself better when trying to get in. Fredrickson has decent power and could land a big shot.
Saucedo left trainer Abel Sanchez after losing to Hooker and he hooked with Pedro Neme Jr. and Eddie Autry who guided him to his last win against Salka. In that bout, he showed better head movement and kept his hands high most of the time. If he continues to improve, he could find his way back in the rankings and become a contender again.
All things considered, I think that Saucedo is the much better fighter. He also has more punching power and has more experience. The only danger here is if he gets too confident and lets his hands down. However, I think Saucedo is going to put on a show here. Both men need a big win but it’s Saucedo who will emerge victorious.
Prediction: Alex Saucedo