Freudis Rojas, a slick, 6-foot-2 power-puncher from Las Vegas, dominated the very game Diego Sanchez in the telecast opener, stopping Sanchez at 58 seconds of the seventh round of the welterweight bout and extending his record to 11-0 with 11 knockouts when referee Tony Weeks intervened to wave off the action at the request of Sanchez’s corner.
Sanchez’s corner halted the bout after their fighter absorbed 159 punches while only landing 51, according to CompuBox stats. Rojas landed 47% of his power punches and averaged 23 punches landed per round and was landing too many unanswered shots when the bout was stopped. The photogenic Rojas, who won every round on the three judges’ scorecards, was giddy with emotion in the ring afterward as he discussed the excitement of fighting on national television for the first time.
“You know this guy was a tough guy. We knew that he was gonna keep putting pressure on,” said Rojas, who was extended past the fourth round for the first time. “I'm glad I got the rounds in because that's what we need in the pros. The more rounds the better, and I know the fans like that. This was the biggest blessing. Like I said at the press conference when I found that the news [I would fight on the telecast] I was jumping around like a little girl like with some pom poms, man ‘cause it's such a blessing. I think this is gonna open a lot more doors for me.”
The southpaw Rojas relied on his long reach and lanky frame to keep the 5-foot-7 Sanchez at bay as he unleashed a steady diet of jabs and left hands. Sanchez’s left eye started to close slightly early in the second frame as Rojas peppered Sanchez with snappy punches. The game Sanchez (19-3, 16 KOs) soldiered on and kept walking forward, even landing a stiff right hand and a left uppercut with a minute left in the fifth that caught Rojas’ attention. Still, it was a dominant performance from Rojas, who owns an amateur win against the headliner Martin and has sparred with elite talents like Terence Crawford, Jaron Ennis, and Alberto Puello. All of Sanchez’s losses have come against undefeated fighters.