James Kirkland to again reunite with trainer Ann Wolfe

Scott Heavey

James Kirkland's latest comeback effort will again include trainer Ann Wolfe after a scheduling conflict with Bob Santos.

Few fighter-trainer relationships have been as fascinating in recent years as the one between troubled Texas slugger James Kirkland and former women's world champion Ann Wolfe, and the two will be getting back together as recently-hired trainer Bob Santos has a scheduling conflict that has taken him out of Kirkland's team.

Santos will be training Erislandy Lara for his finalized December 7 fight on Showtime against Austin Trout, while Kirkland (31-1, 27 KO) also fights that night on HBO, facing Glen Tapia. Wolfe and Kirkland have had a few splits in the past and a somewhat rocky relationship overall, which owes mostly, it seems, to Kirkland's troubles with the law often delaying his career, as well as Kirkland's most recent hold-up, which was more about getting out of his deal with Golden Boy Promotions and his management.

But Wolfe has always said she'd be there for Kirkland, and with an opening for James' team, they're back together. Will they pick up where they left off? Will Kirkland, who hasn't fought since March 2012, be able to physically handle a typical Ann Wolfe training camp, considered notoriously brutal?

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