Diego Pacheco made the most of an unexpected televised showcase.
The 18-year old super middleweight celebrated his first full year as a pro in style, scoring an emphatic 1st round knockout of Tanzania's Selemani Saidi in their swing bout Saturday evening at Diriyah Arena in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia.
Several early knockouts on the undercard provided room for Pacheco, a 6'4" prospect from Los Angeles to showcase his skills. In Saidi (20-16-5, 15KOs), he faced a 40-fight veteran, by far his most experience foe to date and one who expected to give him rounds.
Saidi couldn't even give him minutes.
Pacheco fought with knockout intentions right from the outset, typical of his current stretch of early nights at the office. His right hand was on point, twice wobbling Saidi in the first minute of the fight but always remaining poised in looking to set up that perfect fight-ending shot.
It came in the form of a long right hand which put Saidi down and out. Referee Steve Gray immediately waved off the contest without issuing a count.
The official time was 1:38 of round one.
Pacheco—who is co-managed by Tim VanNewhouse and David McWater—advances to 8-0 (7KOs) with the win, his seventh of the year after making his pro debut just last December. Saturday's early exit leaves him with six consecutive knockouts, collecting his fifth career 1st round stoppage in the process.
The bout served in supporting capacity to the heavyweight title fight rematch between California’s Andy Ruiz (33-1, 22KOs) and England’s Anthony Joshua (22-1, 21KOs). Both bouts along with the entire undercard air live on Sky Sports Box Office in the United Kingdom and stream live on DAZN in the United States.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox