Kirkland: I Didn’t See Canelo’s Knockout Punch Coming

by David P. Greisman

James Kirkland was down in the first, down again two rounds later, then put down for the count once more in the third round. He didn’t spot the punch from Canelo Alvarez that ended the fight on Saturday night in Houston, nor did he even know realize that he’d been knocked out.

“I left my left hand down and he came over the top and caught me with a shot. I tried to regroup. The referee, he called it off,” Kirkland said in his initial post-fight interview, with HBO’s Max Kellerman.

“I did not know I was knocked out,” he told a publicist working for the promotion later. “I jumped on him early and I knew I had him hurt early in the first round, but he escaped out of the corner. We both threw bombs the entire time. He hurt me. I hurt him. I did not see the knockout punch coming.”

The shot laid him out, and referee Jon Schorle immediately waved things off, giving Alvarez a sensational win in front of a highly supportive crowd of 31,588. Kirkland, 31, of Austin, Texas, is now 32-2 with 28 KOs.

“At the end of the day I’m a warrior,” Kirkland said. “He’s a crafty fighter. He come with a lot of skill.”

Pick up a copy of David’s book, “Fighting Words: The Heart and Heartbreak of Boxing,” at or internationally at Send questions/comments via email at [email protected]

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Str8RightHand on 05-11-2015

Kirkland has always been a joke. No skills. Very FUN to watch.. But NO skills

Comment by joseph5620 on 05-11-2015

That was about as brutal a beatdown I've seen in years.

Comment by Jaydublis on 05-11-2015

He didnt see the punch? In the slow motion he watched it come all the way in! Hahhaha Kirkland needs to go back to Wolfe or retire.

Comment by Mike D on 05-11-2015

[QUOTE=NO/BS2468;15674547]karma for what you did to Tapia ![/QUOTE] I forgot about that late big shot on Tapia after the ref had already jumped in. Plus there was Kirkland trying to intimidate Canelo when they met at the center of the…

Comment by DannYankee on 05-11-2015

Kirkland was knocked out on his feet from the first semi hard punch in round 1 so he wasn't seeing a lot in that fight. I saw when it happened and the only reason it went 2 and a half…

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