Tag: james kirkland

24 Jul

khan-judah ringside impressions

cozzone / fight coverage, las vegas / / 0 Comments

Been spitting out crow feathers all morning from picking Zab “Super” Judah to upset Amir “King” Khan at last night’s HBO-televised card at Mandalay Bay. Not quite ready to enlist in Khan’s Army, but there’s little doubt who reigns at 140 pounds.  Judah, meanwhile, aged five years with every round and the beltline blow was a way out of an even uglier end for the former champ.

Undercard a snoozer: While the seven undercard bouts were all “gimme” bouts in favor of the favored, there were still a few pleasant surprises. Topping off the list was seeing Gary Russell Jr. for the first time. Matched up against the granite-chinned Windy City pug, Eric Estrada, Russell’s movement, speed and brilliance in the ring has marked him, at least for me, as THE kid to watch. We’re talking scary.

Peter Quillin put the hurt on game late sub Jason Lehoullier but it was “Kid Chocolate’s” treating the fans and media to handfuls of chocolate kisses and his charisma that has him marked as the man to watch at middleweight. The rest of the undercard? James Kirkland destroyed an overmatched, smaller foe, heavyweight Bryant Jennings showed less than hoped for; Ronnie Rios was handed a win and Josiah Judah .. less said, the better. In the opener, Jamie Kavanagh had to work for his win against game Marcos Herrera.

07 Apr

presser coverage

cozzone / fight coverage, las vegas / / 0 Comments

“Who do ya like?”

It’s a common enough question in the fight biz, but when it comes to “Action Heroes,” I tend to take it a different way. Instead of picking winners and losers, I take the likeability angle, for there ain’t an unlikeable guy on the card. Whether you’re talking about a stand-up and sincere guy like Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero or the charisma that oozes out of James Kirkland, you can’t really lose.

Guerrero and Kirkland were the quiet ones at today’s press conference.

Michael Katsidis nearly stole the show. Looking something between the Joker and the Toxic Avenger, Katsidis was decked out Aussie style –way-Outback. Spitting out a trail of pumpkin seeds around the media room, Katsidis kept the glare of the media room’s fluorescents, the flies and everyone else away with extra-dark sunglasses, neon war paint and corks hanging down from his hat.

Looking more like a guido from “The Pope of Greenwich Village” than an action hero, Paulie Malignaggi, spit out words faster than Katsidis did seeds and proclaimed  himself, “Magic Man – Savior of Boxing,” vowing to win back from UFC the 18-35 year-olds. To do his part, he says he will talk to no one above the age of 35 all weekend, which pretty much means he will not be interviewed at all by the writers of note.

Though Marcos Maidana’s team heaped opponent Erik Morales with praise galore, it was “El Terrible” who stole the show with the closing comments. “After so many interviews, I had to question myself whether this was the right decision,” Morales told the press. “Am I the only crazy one, the only one who thinks I’m going to win? But when I’m alone at night, lying in bed, I know, I’m not wrong. I didn’t make a mistake in picking Maidana – and I’m gonna prove it on Saturday night.”