Thursday, September 24, 2020  |

News

Joet Gonzalez bounces back from first loss, dominating Miguel Marriaga to decision win

Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank
12
Sep

Joet Gonzalez promised to deliver a career-best performance following the worst outing of his career.

And he delivered.

Gonzalez dominated former three-time featherweight title challenger Miguel Marriaga in a 10-round unanimous decision.

Judge Lisa Giampa scored the contest 97-93, while Dave Moretti and  Steve Weisfeld scored the bout 99-91 in favor of Gonzalez in the chief support bout to the 10-round welterweight contest between Egidijus Kavaliauskas and Mikael Zewski.

“It was what I expected. He was a tough guy,” Gonzalez told ESPN’s Mark Kriegel. “He’s been in there with three world champions. He tried to make a last run for it, so I expected the best Marriaga because he knows his time was cut short. I expected the best Marriaga, and he put up a good fight.”

Both boxers entered the ring following long layoffs. Gonzalez was initially due to fight on March 19, only for the event to be canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The coronavirus also ruined Marriaga’s hopes at a fourth title shot when his March 14 clash with then-unbeaten 126-pound titlist Shakur Stevenson was shuttered just days before they were supposed to do battle. He also lost out on a fight this past July when Mark John Yap was more than nine pounds overweight for their fight.

Late in the third round, Gonzalez stunned Marriaga with a crisp right hand to the head.

Marriaga worked his jab in the fourth round, doubling and tripling up on the punch. But Gonzalez (24-1, 14 knockouts) rocked Marriaga with a straight right hand and followed up with a solid combination.

Despite a swollen left eye, Gonzalez continued to come forward and landed the more telling blows.

But it was all Gonzalez from the third round on as he cruised to the victory.

According to Compubox punch statistics, Gonzalez landed 177 of 466 punches (38 percent), while Marriaga, who turns 34 on Halloween, connected on 108 of 357 blows (30 percent).

Saturday’s win now puts Gonzalez in prime position for a shot at the winner of the upcoming vacant title fight between former 122-pound titlist Emanuel Navarrete (32-1, 28 KOs) and unbeaten contender Ruben Villa (18-0, 5 KOs), which takes place October 9 at The Bubble.

Redemption in The Bubble was a sweet one for Aleem Jumakhonov.

Two months after an eight-round decision defeat to unbeaten Martino Jules, the featherweight came through with a third-round knockout of Jorge Ramos.

A clean left hook to the temple sent Ramos down for the 10 count at 2:08 of the frame.

Jumakhonov (9-3-2, 5 KOs) was in full control from the opening bell, though he was tested at times by Ramos.

Coming into the fight, Ramos had never been down in his pro career. But two minutes later, that statistic was nullified when Jumakhonov dropped him with a clean left hook that dropped him to his knees and ended the fight.

Ramos (7-3-1, 4 KOs) has dropped three of his last four contests.

Manuel Flores had never boxed past the fourth round of any fight.

But the extra round didn’t come into play as Flores scored a fifth-round stoppage of Jonathan Rodriguez in a battle between unbeaten 118-pounders.

Flores knocked down Gonzalez in round three before another relentless attack sealed the deal when referee Robert Hoyle stopped their affair at 1:11 of round five.

Both prospects engaged in a high-action, back-and-forth affair from the onset, but Rodriguez seemed puzzled by Flores’ awkward style.

In round four, Flores, who is trained by former lightweight titlist Antonio Diaz, wobbled Rodriguez with a quick flurry that caused both hands to touch the floor for the knockdown.

Rodriguez was warned by Hoyle to start answering back to Flores’ offensive onslaught, but the exact opposite took place. Flores stepped on the gas pedal and pounded Rodriguez, forcing the stoppage victory.

Flores improved to 9-0 (6 KOs) with the victory, while Rodriguez suffered the first loss of his pro career (8-1, 4 KOs).

Anthony Chavez recovered from a shaky first round to outpoint Adan Gonzales over six rounds.

Both boxers hit the floor in an entertaining 130-pound clash, but ultimately only one was officially counted.

All three judges scored the bout 58-55 in favor of Chavez.

Eerily similar to his first fight with former two-time Olympic gold medalist Robeisy Ramirez, who made his pro debut last August. Gonzales sent Chavez (8-2, 3 KOs) to the canvas in the first minute of the fight. The sequence was eerily similar to the start of his eventual upset win over two-time Olympic Gold medalist Robeisy Ramirez.

However, replay exemplified that Gonzales jarred Chavez with a head-butt before landing a right hand to knock Chavez down.

The Nevada State Athletic Commission eventually overruled the knockdown before the start of the sixth and final round.

The Southern California native Chavez rebounded in the third round when he nailed Denver’s Gonzales with a clean left hook that sent him stumbling into the ropes and touching his glove to the mat.

Chavez (9-1, 3 knockouts), 24, who is trained by Henry Ramirez, controlled the rest of the pace as Gonzales’s offense went mute after getting dropped.

Chavez won for the first time since last June when he knocked out Mike Fowler.

Gonzales (5-4-2, 2 KOs) suffered his second consecutive defeat. He was also outpointed by Ramirez in a July 2 rematch in Las Vegas.

Eric Puente may not have a single knockout on his resume, but his record remains unblemished.

The San Diego-based 135-pounder scored a four-round unanimous decision win over Luis Norembuena to open up a six-fight Top Rank on ESPN+ telecast from the MGM Grand Conference Center in Las Vegas.  

Judge Steve Weisfeld scored the contest 39-37, while judges Lisa Giampa and Chris Migliore both had Puente scoring the shutout at 40-36 each.

The 21-year-old Puente (4-0, 0 KOs) boxed a smart fight to defeat Norembuena (4-6-1), who attempted to goad his opponent into a slugfest. But it was all for naught.

Norembuena has dropped five of his last six fights.