Angulo-Melendez bout heating up

As the representatives haggle over the final details of a Dec. 14 fight between junior middleweights Alfredo Angulo of Mexico and Puerto Rico's Jorge Melendez, it is Melendez who has already begun to talk smack.

"Let's get this finished so I can begin getting ready to give the great people of Puerto Rico my finest victory yet," said Melendez, who claims he has wanted a piece of Angulo for some time. "By beating Angulo into retirement, I will put my island back on the boxing map worldwide. It will be a war, but I'm a Puerto Rican warrior who doesn't run. I have the best power in the entire division, and Angulo will be destroyed."

The fighters are due to meet on the Showtime PPV card headlined by welterweight titlist Adrien Broner and slugger Marcos Maidana at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

Given the straight-ahead styles of Angulo and Melendez, the fight figures to produce fireworks.

"With so many disappointing matchups this year, this is the kind of guaranteed action fight boxing needs," said Edwin Diaz, Melendez's manager. "Boxing fans and critics alike want this fight, so let's make it happen."

Angulo (22-3, 18 KOs), 31, is coming off a 10th-round knockout loss to Erislandy Lara in a June interim title bout. Angulo dropped Lara twice but suffered an orbital injury and quit.

The 24-year-old Melendez (27-3-1, 26 KOs), a protégé of Miguel Cotto, was upset in a 10-round decision loss to Nick Brinson in June but rebounded to stop Jamaal Davis in the second round on Oct. 5 on the undercard of Cotto's third-round knockout of Delvin Rodriguez.

"I'm going to train harder than I ever have for this fight, while my coach, Wilfredo Vazquez, designs the strategy to defeat Angulo," Melendez said. "Let's get this fight negotiation finished so I can get ready, and when that night comes, the dog, 'El Perro,' will go out screeching and with his tail between his legs."