James Kirkland, back with Ann Wolfe, was in fine form on Saturday night, climbing off the canvas from an opening round knock-out to stop Alfredo Angulo in six rounds. (Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images)
It started off as a wild back and forth brawl, but by the time the end came, James Kirkland had administered a frightful beating on an exceedingly game Alfredo Angulo. The Mexican brawler was on his feet at the finish, though taking a pounding along the ropes with Kirkland landing bombs at will. The time was 2:01 of the sixth round.
The Texan's night very nearly came to an early end, when he was caught with a huge counter right hand early in the first round, though he weathered the follow-up assault, before sending Angulo to the deck before the opening three minutes were over. Angulo, who may have punched himself out in going for the early finish, was looking fatigued by the third round, and from that point on, though still firing back, was in retreat. Kirkland won from long range, and from in close, using his edge in speed to beat his junior-middleweight rival to the punch, while repeatedly backing him into the ropes with punishing salvos.
The fifth round was one-way traffic. Angulo in continuous retreat, with Kirkland marching forward, sticking home jabs, uppercuts, heavy body shots and big chopping left hands. Occasionally, Angulo, who's legs were looking weak, tried to fire back, though there was little steam on his counters, and it was a wise move by the third man to jump in and call an end to the contest in the sixth round.