Freudis Rojas, Jr. to Make Hometown Professional Debut on July 15 at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas

07/10/2023 - No comments

World Championships medalist and multi-time national champion Freudis Rojas, Jr., will return to his hometown of Las Vegas for his Sin City debut this Saturday, July 15. Rojas will take on Diego Santiago Sanchez in a 10-round welterweight bout on the undercard of Frank Martin and Artem Harutyunyan at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.

The former amateur standout and undefeated pro hasn’t fought in his hometown of Las Vegas since an amateur tournament in 2017. Much like his USA Boxing national team days, Rojas has fought in multiple countries and three different states since entering the paid ranks, but he is looking forward to fighting in front of his family and friends in his eleventh professional fight.

“I’m excited to have my first pro fight here in Las Vegas, and being on a card like this is a real opportunity for me. It’s a blessing to fight here in Vegas because I have a lot of friends and family here who have been supportive of me and can come out and see me fight,” Rojas said.

Saturday’s bout will be Rojas’ first scheduled 10-rounder and he is prepared to go the full distance despite not having fought past four rounds in his ten professional bouts. The 6-2 welterweight is known for his elite level movement and unique style that gives everyone he steps in the ring with challenges.

As he prepares his first fight on the infamous Las Vegas strip, he looks back on a time when his entire family shared a budget studio hotel room on Flamingo and Boulder highway while he was in high school and he is proud of how far he and his family have come.

The Chaparelle High School graduate and his family relocated to Houston in 2021, and Rojas purchased a house for he, his parents and two older siblings, and his father, Freudis Rojas Sr., a former professional boxer, opened his own gym, the O to 100 Boxing Club, in the area.

Yet Las Vegas will always be home for the Rojas family. He returned to Nevada on April 20 and has spent the last 10 weeks training in the familiar surroundings of Sin City. Rojas has been staying in a camp house with Coach Kay Koroma and other members of his former USA Boxing National Team squad to stay fully locked in for his upcoming fight. He enjoys the training setting and working out with his friends and teammates as they each prepare for their upcoming fights.

“It feels nice when everyone around you has the same mentality that you have,” Rojas said. “Everyone is pushing each other in training. Boxing can be a lonely sport so having somebody there laughing with you, training just as hard as you, and pushing you is helpful.”

The July 15 bout will be Rojas’ first fight since his recent signing with Sampson Boxing and he believes that it’s a turning point in his career. He’s looking forward to getting the exposure and visibility he has been hoping for since entering the professional ranks after his decorated amateur career.

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Like many in the sport of boxing, Freudis “Freddy” Rojas was lured into the sweet science by a family member. His father Freudis Rojas, Sr., was a professional boxer when Freddy was little, and he brought he and his younger brother Emmanuel to the boxing gym under the guise of a visit to the grocery store for their first training session. Freddy doesn’t exactly have great memories of his entry into the sport and his feelings about boxing didn’t exactly improve in his early days as a pugilist. Yet he wanted to please his dad and stuck with the sport. Despite his lukewarm feelings about boxing, he excelled at a young age and his perseverance eventually earned Rojas a spot on the USA Boxing junior national team. Once he got the chance to travel to the Olympic Training Center (OTC) in Colorado Springs and spend time training with his fellow national team members, his views on the sweet science quickly began to change.

He back to enjoy it even more once the sport took him to international locations and tournaments, and Rojas became a mainstay at the OTC, living at the elite training location from 2017 to 2020. Rojas began gaining name recognition on the international scene when he won a bronze medal at the 2017 World Championships in Hamburg, Germany. Rojas didn’t initially realize the significance of the international hardware until he returned home and began receiving praise for his accomplishment at only 18-years- old. He became a mainstay on the USA Boxing National Team, adding a second U.S. national championship in 2018, and focusing fully on the 2020 Olympic Games. Yet he fell just short in the 2020 Olympic Team Trials, losing to friend and eventual 2020 Olympian Tiger Johnson.

With his lifelong Olympic dream now out of reach, Rojas actually gave up boxing for a period of time. Devastated by the loss, he locked himself in his room and even got a job at Raising Cain’s while going to college for culinary arts. Yet two voices in his life intervened and encouraged him to return to the sport. His father and his former USA Boxing National Coach Kay Koroma both told him that he was very talented and shouldn’t give up on the sport. Thankfully he listened to their wise words and returned to USA Boxing briefly before turning professional in January of 2021.

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Rojas was extremely active at the start of his pro career, fighting six times in his first year in the paid ranks and adding three more victories to his record in 2022. His activity slowed down as he and his team struggled to find willing opponents for the undefeated, 6-2 welterweight southpaw. Rojas scored his 10th professional victory in February, a first round TKO win. None of his 10 professional bouts have gone to the judges with Rojas scoring a stoppage under four rounds in each of his fights.

In spite of his impressive amateur career and undefeated record, he hasn’t gained the exposure and opportunities he is hoping for. Rojas acknowledges being frustrated during those challenging times and credits his perseverance and ability to keep pushing forward to his parents. He watched both of them struggle financially and remembers seeing his dad work two-three jobs and then go to the boxing gym to provide for his family. He even recalls his whole family living in a small studio hotel room for an extended period of time during his teenage years. It is important to Rojas to repay his parents for all they have given to him and his boxing career. Rojas and his family recently moved to Houston, and he bought a house for he, his three younger siblings and parents all to live in together. His father even opened a gym, the 0 to 100 Boxing Gym, in the area.

In June, Rojas signed a promotional contract with Sampson Boxing and is looking forward to taking the next step in his career with his new promoter. Rojas will return to the ring on the undercard of the Frank Martin – Artem Harutyunyan card on July 15 at the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas. Ironically, Rojas holds an amateur victory over Martin at the 2016 U.S. National Championships where he won his first elite national title.

Rojas considers this moment and his signing with Sampson Boxing a turning point in his young professional career and hopes that he will now begin getting the recognition and fights he has been hoping for. He is proud of both his Cuban and Mexican roots and works hard to represent both sides of his family and their deep boxing heritage in every fight.

Outside the ring, Rojas has career aspirations in both culinary arts and the medical field and he has begun collegiate work in both areas. Earlier in life, Rojas aspired to be a cardiologist and he now has plans to become a registered nurse like his mother, who has worked in multiple areas in medical field. He loves to cook, which his family enjoys, and likes to make all kinds of Italian dishes as well as beef wellington.