Alex Saucedo to fight Arnold Barboza Jr. on Top Rank's Lomachenko-Lopez undercard
The last time Alex Saucedo fought in the MGM Grand Las Vegas bubble, he sported his mission statement in the form of a No. 140 Oklahoma City Thunder jersey.
"Take over the 140 division," the OKC boxer said after beating Sonny Fredrickson by unanimous decision on June 30.
In order to do that, and earn another world-title shot, Saucedo is going to have to first beat undefeated junior welterweight Arnold Barboza Jr. (24-0, 10 KOs). Saucedo will get that opportunity on Oct. 17 in a 10-round bout that will be an appetizer to the highly anticipated lightweight-unification showdown between Vasiliy “Loma” Lomachenko and Teofimo Lopez.
Saucedo (30-1, 19 KOs) knows how to steal the show in the undercard — as his bloody bout against Lenny Zappavigna proved — and he's motivated to improve to 3-0 since joining trainer Pedro Neme.
“Arnold is a very versatile fighter, so we are preparing for everything,” Saucedo said in statement. “I know it will be hard to steal the show from Lomachenko-Lopez, but I’m coming in to put on a memorable fight for the fans. I feel like people still doubt me from the Maurice Hooker fight, and I can’t wait to show everyone all of my tools.”
Barboza, of South El Monte, Calif., is ranked in the top 10 by the WBO and WFC. He beat Tony Luis on Aug. 29 in his most recent bout.
“This fight, and fighting on such a significant card, means the world to me,” Barboza said. “It’s time to put the 140-pound division on notice. I respect Saucedo, but he’s in my way as I strive to earn a world title opportunity.”
The televised portion of the card will kick off with start at 9 p.m. on ESPN with super middleweights Edgar Berlanga (14-0, 14 KOs) and Lanell Bellows (20-5-3, 13 KOs).