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James Kirkland – Profile



JAMES “Mandingo” KIRKLAND
Age: 29 (3-19-84)
Residence: Austin, Texas
Birthplace: Austin, Texas
Record: 31-1, 27 KOs
Height: 5’9”
Reach: 70”
Stance: Lefthanded

JAMES “Mandingo” KIRKLAND (31-1, 27 KOs)…

• Former WBC Continental Americas super welterweight champion, one successful defense…
• Former NABO jr. middleweight champion…

• 2001 Texas Golden Gloves Championships (amateur), 147 pounds – Gold Medalist…

At the age of 29, James is a 12-year pro. A contender at 154 pounds, he is fighting for the first time in
19 months – since March, 2012.

A hard-hitting slugger with an aggressive style, he always makes exciting fights.

He recently signed a promotional contract with promoter 50 Cent – aka Curtis Jackson.

James has won four fights in a row since his only loss in April, 2011, and is coming off a 10th-round
disqualification win against Carlos Molina in his last fight on March 24, 2012.

During the build-up to this fight, he said, “I’ve learned some things about the boxing game that I never
knew. I took time away from boxing and got to learn and get the knowledge, but at the same time, I didn’t
take away from my training. I didn’t take away from my ability. All that I did was learn more.

“I need to have a great performance and show the fans a good fight and give the fans what they want,
which is an exciting fight that will make them stand up in their seats. I’m definitely going to bring it.”

Regarding his nickname, James said, “I got that nickname from Pops Billingsley, my first coach. I got
that ever since I was six years old. I was real skinny, but I was really, really muscular. There’s like, an
African tribe that is like that. They kids come out born, they just really, really muscular. That’s why he
started calling me that.”

Key Fights – 2012 – in his last fight on 3-24-12 in Houston, TX, he won by disqualification (10th round)
against Carlos Molina (19-4-2): the scheduled 12-rounder was co-featured with the Danny Garcia-Erik
Morales main event, and had a questionable ending; James was favored to win, but Molina consistently
outboxed and outworked him and built a lead on the scorecards; James rallied and scored a knockdown
with a left hand as the bell ended the 10th round – Molina was up at the count of four, the referee continued
the 8-count, and one of Molina’s cornermen climbed onto the ring apron; the referee first told him to get
down, then after a brief meeting with state officials at ringside, DQed Molina; after nine rounds, the fight
was scored 87-84, 88-83 Molina, 86-85 Kirkland; Molina went on to win the IBF jr. middleweight world title
in Septepber, 2013…

2011 – on 11-5-11 in Cancun, MX, he won by TKO (6th round) against 2000 Mexican Olympian Alfredo
Angulo (20-1): the scheduled 12 rounder headlined at Centro de Cancun, and it was wild and exciting;
Angulo scored a knockdown with a right early that dazed James in the 1st round and followed with a furious
nonstop attack – but James survived, recovered, and scored a knockdown with a series of punches in the
last seconds of the round; Angulo gave a detemined effort in the following rounds, but James outworked
him, consistently landed the harder punches, and dominated the rest of the fight; he steadily wore down
Angulo, and the referee stopped the fight at 1:58 of the 6th round; after five rounds, James led by scores of
50-46, 50-46, 49-46…

On 7-23-11 in Las Vegas, NV, he won by TKO (2nd round) against Alexis Hloris (15-3-2): the fight was on
the undercard of the Amir Khan-Zab Judah main event, and James quickly overwhelmed him; he scored
two knockdowns, both with a series of punches, in the 1st round; he scored another knockdown early in the
2nd, and the referee stopped the fight at 0:25; after the fight, James said, “I want to get back in the ring as
soon as possible. I feel great. He didn’t hurt me at all. He connected with a couple of punches, but I was
fine.”…

On 6-24-11 in Frisco, TX, he won by knockout (1st round) against Dennis Sharpe (17-7-3): the fight was
co-featured at the Dr. Pepper Arena, and James quickly overwhelmed him; he scored two knockdowns in
the 1st round, both with body punches, and Sharpe was counted out at 2:18…

On 4-9-11 in Las Vegas he lost by TKO (1st round) against against 35 year-old former WBA interim super
welterweight world champion Nobuhiro Ishida (22-6-2): the fight was on the undercard of the Marcos
Maidana-Erik Morales main event; Ishida was considered just another “tuneup” opponent and James was
the heavy favorite to win, but Ishida quickly overwhelmed him – he scored a knockdown with a left hook in
the first 20 seconds of the 1st round, rocked James with a series of punches moments later, scored another
knockdown with a right hand-left hook combination, buckled James’ knees with a right hand, then scored a
third knockdown with a right hand that dropped James flat on his back and the referee stopped the fight
without a count at 1:52; after the fight, James said, “I’m good – I don’t know why they stopped it. There isn’t
a three-knockdown rule in Vegas. I’m really upset right now, that was a messed up call. I was telling the ref
I want to fight. The guy wasn’t anything, he didn’t have any power. This is all messed up.”…

On 3-18-11 in Costa Mesa, CA, he won by knockout (2nd round) against Jhon Berrio (15-8): the fight was
on the uncercard at the Orange County Fairgrounds; Berrio rocked James a few times in the 1st round, but
James hurt Berrio with a left hand to the body early in the 2nd, then scored a questionable knockdown when
Berrio went down afer a grazing punch moments later and was counted out at 1:02…

On 3-5-11 in Anaheim, CA, he won by knockout (1st round) against Ashandi Gibbs (10-2): the fight was on
the undercard of the Saul Alvarez-Matthew Hatton main event; James scored a knockdown with a series of
punches early in the 1st round, and Gibbs was counted out at 0:34…

2009 – on 3-7-09 in San Jose, CA, he won by TKO (6th round) against Joel Julio (34-2): the bout headined
at the HP Pavilion; James constantly pressed forward, landed the harder punches, and dominated the fight;
Julio was cut over his right eye in the 1st round; he had small rallies in the 2nd and 3rd rounds, but James
steadily wore him down; Julio’s right eye was bleeding badly, swollen and battered by the 6th round, and he
did not continue after the round…

2008 – on 11-22-08 in Las Vegas, NV, he won by TKO (8th round) against Brian Vera (16-1): the fight was
co-featured with the Ricky Hatton-Paulie Malignaggi main event at the MGM Grand, and James dominated;
Vera was the naturally bigger man and had fought mostly between 160 and 168 pounds, but was also
awkward and lacked defense and balance; James consistently outworked him, landed the harder punches
to the body and head, and rocked Vera repeatedly; James scored two knockdowns in the 2nd round – the
first with a left hand that dropped Vera to the seat of his trunks, the second with a right hook that spun him
around, facing the ropes, on his knees – Vera was also cut over his right ear; Vera had a few small rallies –
he rocked James with a right hand late in the 4th round, and landed a few good right hands in the 5th and 6th
rounds, as well – but they weren’t enough to take the momentum; James scored another knockdown with a
right hook in the 8th – Vera got up, but James rocked him again and the referee stopped the fight at 1:45;
after the fight, James said, “It was a great fight and I got hit a bunch, but I really enjoyed it. I hope to do
bigger and better things in the near future.”…

On 9-5-08 in Austin, TX, he won by TKO (2nd round) against 6’1” tall Ricardo Cortes (22-2-1): the fight
headlined at the Music Hall, and it was James’s first fight in his hometown since December, 2001, and he
dominated; he scored a knockdown with a right hook-left hand combination in the 2nd round – Cortes got
up, but James rocked him again and the referee stopped the fight at 1:59; after the fight, James said, “It
was fairly decent, but it wasn’t one of my best performances. I look forward to getting better opponents
down the line.”…

WON VACANT NABO JM TITLE – on 5-17-08 in Primm, NV, he won by TKO (1st round) against
Eromosele Albert (22-1-1): James scored two knockdowns early in the 1st round – the first with a left hand
from which Albert never recovered, the second with a series of punches – and the referee stopped the fight
at 1:06; after the fight, James said, “I just wanted to have a good time and have a good fight. I’ve been in
training two months for this fight. I don’t underestimate anyone I fight. I prepare like a killer. At 154, I want
to take it all. Anyone at the weight class, I’m ready and waiting.”…

2007 – on 11-30-07 in Santa Ynez, CA, he won by TKO (1st round) against Allen Conyers (11-2): the fight
headlined at the Chumash Casino – it was wild and exciting while it lasted, which wasn’t long; Conyers, a
natural welterweight who moved up in weight for this fight, scored a knockdown with two right hands in the
1st round, but James got up and scored a knockdown with a left hand moments later; James rocked
Conyers several more times and had him reeling around the ring, then scored another knockdown -
Conyers tried to get up but fell again, and the referee stopped the fight at 2:56; after the fight, James said,
“I showed that I can take a punch and come back strongly. I should have listened to my corner and keep
my hands up. I tell young fighters to keep their hands up, so I need to practice what I preach. I knew that
Conyers was going to be tough. He came out quickly and caught me with a good shot early in the first
round. But, I dropped him with a nice left to the head, and then finished him with a one-two combination at
the end of the first.”…

On 9-1-07 in Tacoma, WA, he won by knockout (2nd round) against Mohamad Said (22-5-1): James
quickly overpowered Said – he scored a knockdown with a series of punches in the first 15 seconds of the
1st round, then scored another knockdown that dropped Said to one knee about a minute into the round -
Said got up and rocked James with a couple of right hands, but James finished the round strongly and
rocked Said several more times before the bell; James scored another knockdown with a three-punch
combination, finished by a left hand, that put Said on the seat of his pants in the 2nd, and he was counted
out at 2:32; after the fight, James said, “I feel that tonight I showed what I was capable of. I don’t want to
say I was looking past Said, but I expected a short fight. Maybe not this short, but I figured four or five
rounds. I feel very satisfied. I was disappointed after my last fight. I was in good shape, but not the kind of
shape I wanted to be. Tonight, I felt great and I’m very happy with my performance.”…

On 6-1-07 in Santa Ynez, CA, he won a 10 round unanimous decision against Ossie Duran (23-5-1): it was
a step up in class for James, but he scored a knockdown with a right hook in the 1st round; Duran
recovered, gave a good effort, and boxed effectively at times, but James consistently outworked him,
landed the harder punches, and dominated most of the fight; scored 97-92, 97-92, 95-94…

On 2-2-07 in Santa Ynez, CA, he won by TKO (8th round) against Billy Lyell (14-3): James consistently
outworked Lyell, landed the harder punches, and shut him out on the scorecards; Lyell’s face became
bruised and battered, and the referee stopped the fight at 0:34 of the 8th round; after the fight, James said,
“The guy was strong, but it was fun getting the rounds in. I’m happy with this win. I was surprised he hung
in as long as he did, but he was tough as nails. His strategy was good, but I knew I could get the rounds.
This was a good, tough test for me and can only help me down the road.”…

2006 – on 12-1-06 in Santa Ynez, CA, he won by TKO (4th round) against David Toribio (13-6): James
scored two knockdowns in the 3rd round; he scored another knockdown with a body punch in the 4th, and
the referee stopped the fight without a count at 1:35…

On 10-6-06 in Santa Ynez he won by TKO (2nd round) against Sherwin Davis (18-3): James scored a
knockdown in the 1st round; Davis told the referee he was injured at the end of the 2nd round, and did not
continue…

On 7-28-06 in Las Vegas he won by TKO (3rd round) against Alexis Divison (16-4): James dominated the
fight – he consistently outworked Divison and landed the harder punches, and Divison did not continue
after the 3rd round…

On 6-3-06 in Las Vegas he won by TKO (1st round) against Jeray Cunningham (5-1): James scored two
knockdowns with body punches in the 1st round, and the referee stopped the fight at 2:16…

On 5-5-06 in Concho, OK, he won by TKO (3rd round, 1:05) against David Estrada (9-5)…

On 4-21-06 in Mt. Pleasant, SC, he won by TKO (3rd round) against Manuel Castillo (13-11-2)…

2003 – on 11-6-03 in Washington, DC, he won by TKO (1st round) against Russell Jordan (6-1)…

On 8-22-03 in Choctaw, MS, he won by knockout (1st round) against Martinus Clay (7-4): James scored a
knockdown in the 1st round, and Clay was counted out at 0:54…

On 5-23-03 in Concho he won by TKO (3rd round) against Sergio Soto (11-8-1): James dominated the fight
and stopped Soto at 0:54 of the 3rd round…

On 3-15-03 in Dallas, TX, he won a 4 round unanimous decision against previously undefeated Rodney
Tappin (5-0): scored 40-36 on all three scorecards…

On 1-31-03 in San Antonio, TX, he won by TKO (3rd round, 0:35) against Juan Aranday (8-34-5)…
He debuted at the age of 17 on 8-25-01 in Austin and won by TKO (3rd round, 1:49) against Maurice
Chalmers (debut)…

AMATEUR, PERSONAL BACKGROUND: James said, “I was born and raised in Austin, Texas. I have two
brothers – I’m in the middle. Basically my mom, she’s just a hard worker, trying to get some type of money
to stay on her feet. She raised us. I ain’t got no dad. The only dad I ever had was Pops. [note: former
trainer Pops Billingsley] I loved every bit of it, though.

“People, they parents got jobs, good jobs, and dads, and all that. My mom, she took care of us
unconditionally. When the lights get turned off, we got candles – ain’t no problem. We was just barely
getting by.

“I loved to street-fight when I was a little kid. I liked to get into stuff that was going to start a fight. I
liked playing marbles and stuff like that, going to cause a conflict.

“We didn’t have toys like everybody else and I was throwing rocks, I was about six years old. My
boxing coach came up to me and he pulled me over to the side and said, ‘Do you know how to box?’ I said,
‘No, I can’t box. I can fight.’ He told me he’d give me five dollars to go fight this dude. I just had quarters
and nickels and dimes. I said, ‘The whole five?’ He said, ‘Yes.’ I said, ‘I don’t care if he’s tall, big or little -
it’s a fight! Show me who he is.’ It was like a sparring match in this boxing gym and ever since that day, I
wanted to go fight. I enjoyed every bit of it, ‘cause you wouldn’t get no spankings for fights. I used to get in
fights all the time, I’d get a whupping.

“I’m naturally lefthanded. I had 134 wins and I got 12 losses in my amateur career. I fought in most
all the nationals. I always got to the finals and they would rob me.”…

AMATEUR HIGHLIGHTS:
2001 NATIONAL GOLDEN GLOVES CHAMPIONSHIPS – Reno, Nevada, 147 pounds – SILVER

MEDALIST: in his first fight on 4-30-01 he defeated William Johnson of Washington, D.C.; in his second
fight on 5-2-01 he defeated Steve Ham of New Jersey; in the quarterfinals on 5-3-01 he defeated
Shamone Alvarez of Pennsylvania; in the semifinals on 5-4-01 he defeated Jose Moreno of Upper
Midwest; in the finals on 5-5-01 he lost to James Parison of California…

2001 U.S. NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS – Colorado Springs, Colorado, 139 pounds: in his first
fight on 3-14-01 he lost a 20-8 decision against Juan McPherson of Cleveland, Oh….

2001 TEXAS GOLDEN GLOVES,147 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST…

1999 NATIONAL JUNIOR OLYMPIC CHAMPIONSHIPS – Marquette, Michigan, 106 pounds –

SILVER MEDALIST: James was 15 years old…in his first fight on 6-22-99 he won a 5-0 decision against
Jose Jimenez of San Fernando, Calif.; in the quarterfinals on 6-23-99 he won a 5-0 decision against
Simon Ramirez of Oklahoma City, Okla.; in the semifinals on 6-24-99 he stopped Aaron Troester of
O’Neil, Neb. at 0:39 of the 2nd round; in the finals on 6-25-99 he lost a 3-2 decision against Nonito Donaire
of Oakland, Calif….

STRENGTHS: A lefthander with an aggressive style and good punching power…is naturally athletic, very
muscular and physically strong…at his best, he constantly pressures his opponents and wears them
down…tough and determined…is experienced against good opposition…had a strong amateur
background…

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE: 12 years, 4 months (inactive 6 years, 2 months)…32 fights…104 total
rounds…

AVERAGE LENGTH OF BOUTS: 3.25 rounds…

KNOCKOUT PERCENTAGE: 77 %…

DISTANCE FIGHTS: 10 rounds – 2 (2-0)…8 rounds – 2 (2-0)…