The Weekend Recap: Canelo Destroys Kirkland in 3

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Updated: May 12, 2015
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After last week’s Mayweather – Pacquiao fiasco, casual and hardcore boxing fans rejoiced this past Saturday evening as Golden Boy Promotions and Leija*Battah Promotions joined forces once again alongside HBO’s “World Championship Boxing” to bring forth a scheduled 12-round bout between Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (45-1-1, 32 KO’s) and James “Mandingo Warrior” Kirkland (32-2, 28 KO’s) in Houston’s Minute Maid Park. The televised main event was accompanied by Joseph “JoJo” Diaz Jr. (16-0, 10 KO’s) taking on Giovani Delgado (15-3, 9 KO’s), while Taishan (4-0, 2 KO’s), China’s largest athletic export since Yao Ming, was also on display.

The main event was everything that it promised to be and all that fans had hoped as both fighters took no time in getting to know each other in violent ways. Kirkland came out quick and furious in the opening round establishing an aggressive and violent pace which pushed “Canelo” back into the ropes with the use of straight punches followed by uppercuts. The Austin fighter was able to land some power shots with his straight left through Alvarez’s guard yet Alvarez would respond with his own firepower. Kirkland’s demise began when he circled around Alvarez and invited his attack while he lingered on the ropes. A straight right put him down for the 8-count. Kirkland would rise and remain on unsteady legs throughout the remainder of the round all the while taking punishment to both the head and body.

The 2nd round saw Kirkland return to his aggressive ways. Another right hand staggered the “Mandingo Warrior” early in the round but he soon came on strong and caught Alvarez with his own shots throughout the round, at one point making Alvarez cover up and retreat. The round would end with Alvarez putting up a rally to leave his fans roaring.

The 3rd round saw more of the same as both fighters would not stop looking for the knockout punch. A quick and stiff Alvarez uppercut would send Kirkland to his knees for another 8-count. Referee Jon Schorle was heard saying, “You got to show me something,” to Kirkland as he cleaned off his gloves. Moments later an Alvarez winging right hand would perfectly connect to Kirkland’s jaw detaching his senses from his body and dropping him unconscious to the mat. Schorle immediately waived the fight off as the lid was almost blown off by the 30,000 plus crowd.

Next up for the Guadalajara, Mexico fighter could be a date in the fall with Puerto Rican Miguel Cotto considering Cotto takes care of Daniel Geale in June. When asked if he was willing to engage with what could be the hottest and most avoided fighter in boxing right now, Gennady “GGG” Golovkin, Alvarez also stated he was willing to face the unified middleweight champion.

While the main event was as entertaining as three rounds of boxing can get, the rest of the card was about as one-sided and as unsatisfactory as a card of this magnitude should not be. Hardcore boxing fans showed up early expecting for De La Hoya’s words of making fights that fans want to see to come to fruition, yet it terribly failed to materialize. Of the 12 bouts the card featured the winner of every single bout came from the blue corner. Aside from the main event, the undercard had a glorified club show feel to it.

Joseph “JoJo” Diaz won a one-sided unanimous decision over Giovanni Delgado as the evening’s new co-main event. What was supposed to be an enticing and competitive co-main event fight between former champion Humberto Soto and undefeated prospect Frankie Gomez did not happen thanks to Gomez’s repeated unprofessionalism of failing to make weight the day prior to the bout. Honestly, it is time Golden Boy Promotions lets go of this young man as this has become a habitual issue with Gomez. The hubris which Gomez shows at this point in his career is flat out egregious and definitive of how a true professional fighter should not act.

Taishan received a gift as large as the state of Texas when he took home a majority decision victory over journeyman Jamal Woods. Woods landed the heavier and more damaging blows throughout the fight and deserved a draw instead of the loss.

Corpus Christi’s Ramsey Luna (12-3) won the fight and the crowd yet somehow ended up on the losing end of a decision against Curtis Meeks. Meeks, who showed true grit battling through an injured right shoulder, was unable to get an offensive flow throughout the fight due to the injury. Despite taking the heavier punishment, two out of the three judges saw Meeks winning the fight. The crowd displayed their dissatisfaction with the decision by unleashing the boo birds.

Joshua “Grand Master” Clottey took home a unanimous decision in a one-sided affair against Jorge “Pantera” Silva in a 10-round super welterweight fight. Clottey looks to find himself in the “Canelo” sweepstakes, yet with the inability to put away the faded Silva, little interest lies in this fight.

In other action, Alfonso Lopez defeated Lester Gonzalez by 2nd round TKO. Rodrigo Guerrero won by TKO when Arturo Badillo did not come out for the 7th round. KeAndre Gibson took care of business and outclassed Jorge Romero by unanimous decision. Ryan Martin blasted away Ivan Zavala in the 1st round with a single right hand. Armando Piña TKO’d Zachariah Kelley in the 2nd round. Joseph Rodriguez took home a majority decision over Luis Guevara. And Crescencio Ramos stopped Cody Walker in the 1st round.

Javier Cantu may be reached at javier.cantu.1984@gmail.com.

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