Canelo Alvarez vs James Kirkland Prediction
A super welterweight storm of testicular fortitude beckons this weekend, when these two all action warriors collide at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas.
“It ain’t about how hard you hit, its about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward”
A week removed from the ‘Fight of the Century’ usual boxing services will be resumed when Mexico’s young lion Canelo Alvarez takes on big hitting Texan James Kirkland, in what could be a Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em style dust up.
Both of these exciting pugilists have had to face adversity and pick themselves up in recent years, for different reasons. Expect a show from them this weekend.
They both come into Saturday’s bruiser in fairly decent form. The underdog Kirkland, is coming off the back of five straight stoppage victories that have included some reputable scalps such as Alfredo Angulo, Carlos Molina and Glen Tapia.
He’ll also be bolstered by a new team that he’s surrounded himself with, which often can bring a fresh approach for a fighter. Change can often bring about positive results, but then again, there has been cases where switching things up can be counter productive for a boxer going into a big fight.
Nonetheless, Kirkland will be looking to put past troubles outside of the ring firmly behind him and will enter this match in great form – with nothing to lose as the bookie’s underdog.
Canelo comes into the bout in solid form, off the back of a razor thin (and controversial) split decision victory over the supremely talented Erislandy Lara last summer and before that, a conclusive ten round demolition over shared opponent Alfredo Angulo back in March of last year.
Arguments could be made that Kirkland was more impressive against Angulo as he took him out in four less rounds than Canelo did.
Both Canelo and Kirkland have not been the most active fighters over the last couple of years but if there was an edge to give to someone in the form guide, perhaps it would go in ever so slight favour of the American Kirkland.
Stylistically, Saturday could make for a spectacle quite a bit different from last weekend’s chess match between Mayweather and Pacquiao, which might please the knockout lovers.
Although Kirkland is a southpaw and Canelo has struggled with southpaws before, Kirkland would be much more aggressive and open when comparing him to the likes of Erislandy Lara or Austin Trout.
Kirkland brings the heat and has that all important fight changing ability to render someone unconscious with a single punch. However Canelo has shown a granite chin thus far in his young yet experienced career.
You could say this is a match up of an aggressive puncher vs another aggressive puncher, but the other can box beautifully at times. This is where the main difference in styles exists for me.
Although Canelo loves to please the fans by standing toe to toe at times, I think he’ll look to employ more of his polished boxing skills this weekend, against a knockout artist who essentially fights one way.
Both combatants are virtually identical in the height and reach departments, but I see Canelo being able to control distance better with his well timed, ramrod jab and footwork. It will be up to Kirkland to close the distance on his younger foe and force him into a dog fight.
It is hard to believe Canelo is still just twenty four years old, given the caliber of opposition he’s faced and the regularity he’s done so in.
To me, Canelo is a young man far advanced beyond his years in terms of his boxing skills and I think this weekend that will be the difference.
I can see Canelo timing Kirkland well with powerful counters and there’s every chance the Mexican could force a stoppage if Kirkland keeps walking onto big shots all night. Kirkland has also been stopped once before and has only boxed twice in the last four years.
There’s definitely a lot of signs pointing to a Canelo stoppage but make no mistake, Kirkland is as dangerous as they come in the light middleweight division and he’ll be spurred on by fighting in front of home fans in Texas.
Canelo will also have a large fan base from Mexico who will have made the short trip to Texas also will be highly motivated with a point to prove, after the controversial Lara win.
I just think the aggressive style of Kirkland will suit Canelo down to the ground and the young Alvarez looks in absolutely monster condition at the moment. If you like a good ding dong between two concussive hitters – this one’s for you!
My pick – Canelo Alvarez by KO/TKO
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