Rocky Juarez vs. Zahir Raheem, Houston, Texas, 2004
Gonzalez was bad in the Johnson-Marquez bout but he outdid himself in this 12-round featherweight title elimination bout, which was televised on HBO.
Raheem never had a chance in what should have been a compelling boxer vs. pressure fighter matchup between U.S. Olympians due to the blatant bias of Gonzalez, who deducted points from the Philadelphia native for holding behind the head in rounds four, six and 10.
The holding was not excessive and Juarez, who won by scores of 115-109, 114-110, 113-111, also had a part in the inside grappling, but the Texas official never warned the Houston native.
Speaking Juarez, the 2000 Olympic silver medalist was unhappy with Gonzalez’s officiating even though he benefited from it. Juarez felt he couldn’t get any momentum going while working on the inside because Gonzalez was too quick to break them up in order to admonish Raheem.
Gonzalez was so over-the-top bad that retired referee Mills Lane, who had kept a low profile since suffering a debilitating stroke in 2002, broke his silence to address the misconduct in the form of a letter to Richard Cole, the head of the Texas boxing commission:
Dear Mr. Cole:
In short this was the worst performance by any referee that I have witnessed. Raheem should not be penalized for suffering a loss because of a referee's conduct. In closing, I would urge the commissioners office to rule this fight a "no contest."