“What a great, competitive fight,” said Frank Espinoza, manager of featherweight Joet Gonzalez, when discussing his boxer's bout with former world champion Isaac Dogboe.
Dogboe 24-2 (15) won by split decision over Gonzalez, 25-3 (15) in a ten round WBC featherweight eliminator on Saturday night.
“Joet did a great job. He attacked the body and was very effective. Dogboe is a hell of a fighter and he had his moments but in the end I felt that Joet had pulled off the win," Espinoza.
“[Joet] did his job and it was close. Dogboe used to be a word champion for a reason. He’s a talented fighter,” Espinoza continued. “This is one of the closest fights I’ve ever been involved with and if you speak to different people in the media and you’ll get different opinions about who won.”
The scores were razor thin with Dogboe winning on two of the official cards with tallies of 96-94 and Gonzalez winning the third card, also with a tally of 96-94.
The ESPN commentators had the fight scored dead even at 95-95.
“This was a hard fought, fan friendly fight. Very exciting. But let’s face it we didn’t get a clear winner,” said Espinoza. “I think the fans would greatly benefit from a rematch. This was a WBC title eliminator and getting that title shot is a once in a lifetime opportunity for these guys. They both deserve clarity.”
ESPN had Gonzalez ahead on punch output at the end of the fight with Gonzalez landing 197 punches to Dogboe’s 190.
Gonzalez felt he clearly won the fight.
“Much respect to Dogboe he’s a great fighter but I felt I did more than enough to win. I’m feeling very unsatisfied with this decision,” he said. “I absolutely 100 percent want a rematch. This was too close. If I’m going to lose I should feel like I lost but I don’t feel I lost this time.”
Espinoza will be seeking a rematch immediately with the WBC.
“Absolutely. The fans and the fighters deserve part 2 of Gonzalez vs Dogboe,” he said. “These guys careers are on the line. So you’ll see even more of a dog fight in the re match. They know what’s at stake. It’s their future and their family's future. These guys have a lot of pride and they’re hungry for greatness. This is one of those rematches that will be a guaranteed war. As the commentators on ESPN said, this was a special fight. And special fights deserve a rematch.”