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Photos: Maurice Hooker, Alex Saucedo - Open Workouts

The "Red River Rivalry" — the pugilistic version — has kicked off. WBO junior welterweight champion Maurice Hooker, from Dallas, Texas, will defend his world title Friday evening against Oklahoma City native Alex Saucedo at the Chesapeake Energy Arena, home of the NBA's Oklahoma City Thunder.

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This will be the first title defense for Hooker (24-0-3, 16 KOs), who won the belt June 9 when he traveled to Manchester, England, and defeated Terry Flanagan via split decision.

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Saucedo (28-0, 18 KOs) earned his first world title shot with a sensational, bloody seventh-round TKO against Lenny Zappavigna on June 30 at the Chesapeake Energy Arena.

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The undercard, including the welterweight showdown between Egidijus "The Mean Machine" Kavaliauskas and Roberto Arriaza, will stream live at 6:30 p.m. ET on ESPN+ 
 
Hooker and Saucedo worked out Monday at the Azteca Boxing Club. This is what they had to say.

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Maurice Hooker

"This is his first time in a world title fight, so he's nervous. It's his first big fight at home. A championship. I know he's nervous."

"I'll tell you this. Don't blink, because I'm coming."

"I'm feeling good, feeling confident in myself. I'm ready to fight."

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Alex Saucedo

"Maurice Hooker is a champion for a reason. He's a great fighter with a good reach and power in both of his hands. We have a tough fight on our hands, but we will be ready for anything that he brings to the table."

"I'm going to show boxing fans the real me on Nov. 16. He can say what he wants about me getting hit a lot, but I don't have any draws on my record. He says I've been hit a lot, but if you have three draws on your record, that means you're not that hard to hit."

"I am a different fighter than Terry Flanagan, who he won the title from. As always, I'm going to give it my all in the ring. I just want to beat him up and become the new WBO junior welterweight champion of the world."

"Hooker's fight with Flanagan. All I have to say is I'm a different fighter than Flanagan. On Friday, he will see the type of fighter I am."

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Promoted by Top Rank, in association with Roc Nation Sports and Matchroom Boxing USA, tickets for this world championship event are on sale now. Priced at $250, $150, $75, $50, and $35, tickets may be purchased at the Chesapeake Energy Arena box office, online at Ticketmaster.com, all Ticketmaster outlets, or by phone at 1-800-745-3000.

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User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Sable&Whitefish on 11-13-2018

War Saucedo! This could be a really excellent fight, can't wait for it. As mentioned above Saucedo/Zappavigna was up there for fight of the year, hopefully we see something similar here.

Comment by aztec_warriors on 11-13-2018

El Cholo gonna fk this clown up... can’t wait, will be there to see it live

Comment by indelible on 11-13-2018

Saucedo says he's not like Terry Flanagan but he's forgetting that Hooker is not Lenny Z. He nearly got KO twice by a veteran fighter. Hooker gonna do more damage

Comment by Mammoth on 11-13-2018

[QUOTE=James Hunt;19268676]Abel training Saucedo is a guarantee for Hooker's win. Abel's training methods are outdated and in exact opposite to scientific findings.[/QUOTE] Abel is a terrible trainer

Comment by James Hunt on 11-13-2018

Abel training Saucedo is a guarantee for Hooker's win. Abel's training methods are outdated and in exact opposite to scientific findings.

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