Boxing

James Kirkland-Delvin Rodriguez Being Discussed For February - Rodriguez’s Reward For Dominant Win Over Pawel Wolak?

Delvin RodriguezBy James Slater: James Kirkland and Delvin Rodriguez, exciting fighters both, are fully deserving of a big fight. “Mandingo Warrior” Kirkland emerged victorious in a must-win fight back on November 5th, when the 154-pound southpaw got off the deck to sensationally stop Alfredo Angulo in a thriller in Mexico. While Rodriguez won in commanding style this past Saturday, in his return match with the teak-tough Pawel Wolak.

The word according to the man with all the news, Dan Rafael of ESPN.com, is that the two light-middleweights could be matched together in February as part of the in-the-works Marcos Maidana-Devon Alexander welterweight fight. If HBO’s plan comes off (according to Rafael the card that could feature Kirkland-Rodriguez is being talked about presently), the supporting bout could top the main event as far as action and value for money are concerned.

Another potentially thrilling boxer Vs. puncher clash, with Kirkland being the latter, Rodriguez the former - this fight could even produce more fireworks than Kirkland’s win over Angulo and Rodriguez’s win over Wolak did! Okay, maybe I’m getting carried away, but whenever either of these two 154-pound contenders fight, there is a great chance we will see something special.

27-year-old Kirkland, who has seemingly put that April shocker of a 1st-round defeat to Nobuhiro Ishida behind him, has been captivating fight fans for a few years now; what with his raw power, his seeming disdain for defence and his sheer work-rate. While 31-year-old Rodriguez is no slouch when it comes to turning in the odd classic (see his July draw with Wolak.) Matched together, as hungry as they are, Kirkland, 30-1(27) and Rodriguez, 26-5-3(14) would almost certainly send the fans home happy.

Rodriguez is unbeaten at light-middleweight, yet he has had just two fights at the weight. Against Kirkland, the older man would really be fighting a beast of a 154-pounder. Rodriguez’s chin held up fine against anything Wolak was able to test it with, but Kirkland hits a whole lot harder than does the rock-chinned Pole. Then again, in Rodriguez Kirkland would be facing a sharp puncher who can really box at a fierce pace. At this early stage, I’d lean towards a Kirkland win, perhaps via a late-rounds stoppage - but this prospective match-up has the look of a 50-50 affair.

Rodriguez has been stopped, by Jesse Feliciano, down at 147, in a shocker back in early 2007 and Kirkland is the type of guy who will feel he too can halt the man from The Dominican Republic. A fascinated audience is sure to tune in to find out for themselves. If this potential barnburner is actually signed, sealed and delivered, that is. Let’s hope it is!

Article posted on 06.12.2011



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