Emanuel Navarrete was fighting outside of his native Mexico for the first time but never seemed unnerved by it or the fact that he would be on the biggest stage of his career when he faced junior featherweight world titlist Isaac Dogboe.
And Navarrete, the mandatory challenger, took it to Dogboe. He landed a lot of hard punches, swelled Dogboe’s face and scored an upset unanimous decision to take his 122-pound world title in the co-feature on the Vasiliy Lomachenko-Jose Pedraza lightweight unification bout on Saturday night at the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden.
Two judges scored the fight 116-112 for Navarrete and the third had it 115-113. ESPN.com also scored the fight 116-112 for Navarrete.
“Hearing those words [‘and the new world champion’] was the culmination of a dream, a culmination of all the hard work and all the sacrifices that I have made,” Navarrete said through an interpreter. “Thanks to Isaac Dogboe. I knew I’d have to be at my best.
“I hurt my right hand early in the fight, but I had the desire to be a champion and I did everything necessary to get the title, and I am very happy and proud to achieve this goal of being the world champion.”