Posts Tagged ‘Lucian Bute’

Jean Pascal to fight fellow Canadian favorite Lucian Bute

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Jean Pascal (left) lost his light heavyweight title to Bernard Hopkins in 2011. (Rogerio Barbosa/AFP/Getty Images)

Jean Pascal (left) lost his light heavyweight title to Bernard Hopkins in 2011. (Rogerio Barbosa/AFP/Getty Images)

In what will be perhaps the biggest fight in Canadian boxing history, former light heavyweight champion Jean Pascal will take on former super middleweight titleholder Lucian Bute on May 25th, promoters of the event announced on Friday.

Neither Pascal, who is from Haiti, or Bute, a native of Romania, were born in Canada. But both have been living and training there for years and both routinely draw huge crowds in Montreal and Quebec City.

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  • Published On Mar 15, 2013
  • What to take away from Bernard Hopkins’ win over Tavoris Cloud

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    Bernard Hopkins defeated Tavoris Cloud in a unanimous decision for the IBF light heavyweight title. (Frank Franklin II/AP)

    Bernard Hopkins beat Tavoris Cloud in a unanimous decision for the IBF light heavyweight title. (Frank Franklin II/AP)

    NEW YORK — Three thoughts form Bernard Hopkins’ historic win over Tavoris Cloud:


    Say what you want about Hopkins: Say he’s dull, say he takes too many cheap shots, say he talks tougher than he fights. But Hopkins, at 48 years old, made history Saturday night, out-pointing Tavoris Cloud to win the IBF light heavyweight title and become, again, the oldest man to win a major championship. Hopkins did it his way: He tagged Cloud with a flurry of combinations, moved in and out, kept his chin down to avoid big punches, and refused to let Cloud land more than one shot. It was a quintessential Hopkins performance. He was the better boxer and, astonishingly, the man in better shape. It was, simply, a clear win.

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  • Published On Mar 10, 2013
  • Quick Jabs: Gennady Golovkin’s next move, Seth Mitchell experiment probably over and more

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    Gennady Golovkin (above) will defend his middleweight title against an opponent to be determined on Jan. 19 in New York at the Theater at Madison Square Garden. (AP)

    Some quick jabs …

    • I’m told HBO is now considering two possible opponents for Gennady Golovkin’s Jan. 19 middleweight title defense: Fernando Guerrero, a one-time prospect who is represented by Al Haymon, and Gabriel Rosado, a rising junior middleweight who is currently the IBF’s mandatory challenger for Cornelius “K9″ Bundrage’s title. To me, the decision is an easy one: Guerrero — who beat Rosado in a controversial eight-round middleweight fight in 2009 — has done nothing recently to warrant this kind of opportunity. Rosado, meanwhile, beat three quality opponents in 2012, all on NBC Sports Network, all by knockout. Rosado is the definition of a television-friendly fighter. A matchup with Golovkin would be a war.

    • Super featherweight Teon Kennedy’s injury forced Main Events to find a new opponent for undefeated prospect Jerry Belmontes in the co-feature of the Dec. 8 card on NBC Sports Network. On Monday they announced that Eric Hunter (16-2) would step in. Hunter has been on the shelf for most of the last two years, fighting once (last July) since December of 2010.

    • Kudos to Seth Mitchell for accomplishing a lot in boxing despite not picking up the gloves until he was 24. But this experiment is probably over. You can’t teach a chin and in his last two fights Mitchell has been buzzed by Chazz Witherspoon and knocked out in two rounds by Johnathan Banks. There are things Mitchell can do to improve — he still has no idea how to hold when he gets hurt — but if light hitters like Witherspoon and Banks can wobble him, he’s a sitting duck for one of the Klitschko brothers.

    • Speaking of Banks: I’d like to see him face one more quality opponent before looking for a fight with Wladimir or Vitali Klitschko. A matchup with Tyson Fury, David Price or his preferred choice, Alexander Povetkin, next year could make Banks some money and, if he wins, give him some momentum heading into a major title fight.

    • I’m looking forward to Miguel Cotto-Austin Trout on Dec. 1 at Madison Square Garden, but that undercard is horrendous. Jayson Velez and Danny Jacobs — questionable choices for a televised undercard to begin with — will fight separately on Showtime’s broadcast in fights that do nothing for me. Velez (19-0) will face Salvador Sanchez II (30-4-3), nephew of Mexican legend Salvador Sanchez, while Jacobs (23-1), the former prospect and cancer survivor who will fight for the second time in three months, gets Chris Fitzpatrick (15-2).

    • I don’t know what has gotten into Carl Froch, but after another impressive knockout — this one over handpicked challenger Yusaf Mack — I just don’t know how Lucian Bute can beat him. Froch is just too strong.

    • Bring on Adrien Broner-Ricky Burns.

    • Thank you, Fred Sternburg, for sending out 400 emails letting everyone know that Manny Pacquiao gave away free turkeys last week. My overflowing inbox extends its regards.

    • Hey British promoter Frank Maloney: Your comment that Wladimir Klitschko would be happy not to have to pay Emanuel Steward his 10 percent after a one-sided win over Mariusz Wach last week was disgusting and classless. Steward, a longtime mentor and trainer for Klitschko, lost a battle with cancer last month. Maloney should be ashamed.

    – Chris Mannix

  • Published On Nov 20, 2012
  • Quick Jabs: Lucian Bute’s underwhelming victory, Jean Pascal’s return and more

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    Lucian Bute (right) showed little in Saturday’s points win over Denis Grachev (left) that suggested a rematch with Carl Froch would go any differently. (AP)

    Some quick jabs …

    • Lucian Bute needed a win to regain his confidence after last May’s devastating knockout loss to Carl Froch. But nothing I saw in Bute’s unanimous-decision win over Denis Grachev on Saturday convinced me Bute will beat Froch in a rematch, tentatively scheduled for next March. Bute looked tentative at times, was backed up way too often and looked clueless when forced to fight on the inside. Put it simple: If that Bute shows up against Froch, it will be lights out again.

    • A quick thought on Grachev: I believed he was a good fighter when the Bute fight was made, and I still do. The fight was close — the 118-110 card submitted by Canadian judge Claude Paquette reeked of hometown scoring — and Grachev was the aggressor throughout. The super middleweight division is loaded and I would have no problem seeing Grachev in a big fight next year.

    • Maybe it’s just me, but I’m really looking forward to Wladimir Klitschko’s fight against undefeated 6-foot-8 challenger Mariusz Wach. I think it has the potential to be a pretty good fight.

    • Count me among the many disappointed that Tyson Fury’s fight against Denis Boytsov has been called off. Fury-Boytsov was just the kind of fight the heavyweight division needs: a matchup between two undefeated, would-be contenders that would bolster the resume of the winner and weed the loser out of the division rankings. What’s worse, Boytsov pulled out because, according to his promoter, he wasn’t going to be in shape for the fight. Not in shape? Then why did he agree to the fight in the first place?

    • Marco Huck’s entertaining cruiserweight title defense over 42-year old Firat Arslan was fun to watch but provided incontestable proof that Huck should not go anywhere near Wladimir Klitschko. Huck is young (27) but is showing the wear and tear of a fighter who doesn’t know how to duck. A matchup with Klitschko — which Huck has publicly pleaded for — would be criminal.

    • Hey, look, Jean Pascal is coming back. That is until Pascal — inactive since losing to Bernard Hopkins in May 2011 — finds a reason not fight. Between Pascal and Andre Dirrell, I’m not sure who has wasted more prime fighting years.

    • Almost four pounds over the light heavyweight limit. Way to be professional, Allan Green.

    • This 50 Cent-Floyd Mayweather feud is pretty entertaining, and it only figures to get better. History suggests that 50 will soon release a track bashing Mayweather and Mayweather will use the press tour for his next fight to verbally smack 50 around all over the country. Still, in a battle for the boxing industry, my money is on Mayweather. Floyd is a marketing genius with the biggest draw in town — himself — in his stable. 50 Cent has an unwatchable fighter in Billy Dib, an inactive one in Andre Dirrell and another, Yuri Gamboa, who may be on his way back to Top Rank. 50 is a gifted recording artist but he doesn’t seem to have a clue about how to make it in boxing.

    • Memo to Tom Loeffler: Keep Gennady Golovkin away from the super middleweights. The latest intel has Golovkin returning in January against either Edwin Rodriguez or Thomas Oosthuizen, two 168-pounders. Golovkin is powerful and seriously skilled but he is not a particularly big middleweight (5-foot-10) and it makes no sense for him to be moving up. I admire Golovkin’s willingness to take on all comers, but a better fight — with the understanding that neither Daniel Geale or Peter Quillin will face him — is Matthew Macklin. Golovkin-Macklin would sell a lot of tickets at the Madison Square Garden theater and be a pretty good fight.

    – Chris Mannix

  • Published On Nov 06, 2012
  • Quick Jabs: Adamek-Cunningham II set, Froch changes his mind and more

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    Tomasz Adamek

    Tomasz Adamek will fight Steve Cunningham again after their epic bout in 2008, which Adamek won by split decision. (Al Bello/Getty Images)

    Some quick jabs…

    • Though it wasn’t announced, Main Events had planned to match heavyweight contender Tomasz Adamek against former title challenger Odlanier Solis on its NBC show — the main NBC network, not NBC Sports Network — on Dec. 22nd. However, last week Solis’ new advisor, Gabriel Penagaricano, went to Main Events and said the money Solis had agreed to wasn’t going to be enough.

    In an email to, Duva explained what happened:

    “Recently, Solis pulled out of a fight in Spain that had been made by [promoter] Ahmet Ohner. Shortly after that we were informed by Solis’ new representative that he would not fight on Dec. 22nd under the terms that had been agreed to by his previous management. We went back and forth for over a week trying to resolve the situation. He was given a deadline of Friday, Oct. 12th to sign the paperwork. When he did not, we informed his representative that we were prepared to move on with another opponent. We then gave him until Monday at noon to reconsider. When he did not come back to us with an agreement by noon on Monday, we offered the fight to another heavyweight, who jumped at the opportunity. The deal was literally finished in the space of a few hours. Late on Monday night, Solis’ representative informed us that he was now ready to live up to our original deal. At that point, however, it was too late to turn back, as we had committed to another bout.”

    That other fighter Duva alludes to is Steve Cunningham, a longtime cruiserweight titleholder who made the jump to heavyweight in September. In 2008, Cunningham waged an epic war with Adamek, losing a split decision. Though Solis-Adamek was a more meaningful fight — the winner would have been well positioned for a 2013 fight with Wladimir Klitschko — Adamek-Cunningham is a can’t miss action fight.

    “This is a fight my team and I have wanted since the first one,” Cunningham said. “Adamek and I have been on two different paths, but in December our paths will collide again. I have respect for Adamek; he has done great things in his career, but I’m confident I’ll get the victory. I’m looking forward to it. On December 22nd I’ll be the best Steve Cunningham anyone has seen yet.”

    • Meanwhile, Duva continues to look for an opponent for rising heavyweight prospect Bryant Jennings. One opponent who turned them down was Tor Hamer, a once-beaten heavyweight in Lou DiBella’s stable. According to DiBella, the offer — around $15,000, he said — simply wasn’t enough. Sound crazy? To me, too. Hamer’s career stalled after a 2010 loss to Kelvin Price and though he seemed to revive it after winning the U.K. Prizefighter tournament earlier this year, he is hardly a sought after fighter.

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  • Published On Oct 17, 2012
  • Three thoughts on Froch’s TKO of Bute

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    Carl Froch solidifed his status as an elite super middleweight fighter. (

    NOTTINGHAM, England — Here are three thoughts on Carl Froch’s spectacular fifth-round knockout win over Lucian Bute:

    1. Carl Froch is the second-best super middleweight in the world. Throw out the loss to Andre Ward. Toss it. Trash it. Ward is elite, and odds are if he fights Froch 10 times he will get smoked 10 times. Ward is No. 1 in the division, but Froch should be ranked right behind him. Bute was widely considered the 1A 168-pounder, and Froch destroyed him. After an even first round, Froch turned on the pressure and pounded Bute into submission. Before the fight Bute said he didn’t want to spend the night on the end of Froch’s long jab. Froch didn’t give him the chance; he turned a prizefight into a street fight and had Bute out on his feet in the fifth round when his corner jumped into the ring to stop the fight. That was as impressive a win as anyone could ask for.

    2. What happened to Bute? Bute’s plan coming was to put pressure on Froch, to make him fight the full three minutes every round. Instead, he couldn’t keep Froch off him. No excuses, either: Bute said before the fight he was in top shape, and looked it in the ring. He brought seven different sparring partners to camp, including a heavyweight, to simulate Froch’s aggressiveness and spoke confidently that his aggressiveness would be the key to the fight. But he was completely overmatched. Bute showed a great chin, absorbing shot after shot, haymaker after haymaker, refusing to go down. But his counterpunches didn’t faze Froch; he simply walked right through them.

    To Bute’s credit, he marched into enemy territory and took less money than he could have made in Canada to prove that he could win outside of his adopted home country. But that fight could have been in Bute’s living room with his siblings as judges and he would not have had a shot.

    3. So … Bute-Froch II? Bute has a rematch option, in Canada, and there will be plenty of money in it if he picks it up. A rematch would draw close to 20,000 fans at the Bell Centre in Montreal, or some other venue. Bute, however, may not be up for it. He took a pretty savage beating against Froch and may want a confidence boosting bout before he takes another shot. Froch will have options — he says a rematch with Ward is not one of them — including Mikkel Kessler, who beat Froch in 2010. Or Froch could opt for an easier title defense; his promoters were interested in Librado Andrade before Bute accepted the offer to come to England.

    Suddenly, Froch has a bright future. He says he would have retired had he lost to Bute. Now, he is arguably the most appealing super middleweight in the division.

    –Chris Mannix

  • Published On May 26, 2012
  • Lucian Bute bucks recent boxing trend, downplays injury before Froch fight

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    Lucian Bute

    Lucian Bute is hoping to prove he can win away from home with a victory over Carl Froch in England on Saturday. (Scott Deveay/Getty Images)

    NOTTINGHAM, England — How many times have we heard a fighter blame a lackluster performance on an injury? David Haye blamed a broken pinky toe for his loss to Wladimir Klitschko. Audley Harrison blamed a torn pectoral muscle for his lopsided loss to Haye. Zab Judah claimed he was exhausted in his loss to Carlos Baldomir because Don King forced him to do too many interviews before the fight.

    Excuses have become part of the fiber of the sport. So you can imagine when I received a press release from IBF super middleweight Lucian Bute’s camp earlier this month about an infection Bute suffered in his right big toe, I wondered if this was Bute’s team floating an early excuse for a potential loss to Carl Froch on Saturday night (6 p.m. ET, Epix,

    Bute says that could not be further from the truth. First, some facts: Late last month, Bute decided to try on a new pair of shoes to train with. During that first training session, Bute began to develop blisters on both of his toes. The blister on a right toe became infected, making it painful to walk on and, worse, causing a shooting pain to run up his right leg. The infection also led to a fever and weakened him for days.

    Ultimately, Bute went and saw a doctor, who diagnosed the infection and put him on a ten-day regiment of antibiotics. The injury forced him out of two days of training — and even had his trainer, Stephan Larouche, contemplating canceling the fight — but Bute was able to recover quickly enough to resume a normal schedule.

    Bute says his team had no intention of releasing the information until an Internet report appeared exposing the injury. To settle uneasiness in the Froch camp, Bute issued a statement making it clear he would move forward with the fight.

    Give Bute credit: These days many fighters who experience an injury that significantly disrupts training will postpone the fight. But Bute was determined to move forward. After speaking with him on Friday, I get the sense that this fight means a lot to him. He understands the rap on him is that he always fights close to home. He thinks (correctly, in my opinion) that a win over Froch on his home turf will end all that talk, which is why he is taking a paycut to do it. He says he is approaching this fight like the title is vacant and that he has to win it all over again if he is going to bring it back to Canada.

    Whatever happens, however, Bute won’t be blaming his toe.

    – Chris Mannix

  • Published On May 25, 2012
  • Experts’ predictions for Lucian Bute-Carl Froch

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    Lucian Bute (right) defends his IBF super middleweight title against Carl Froch (left) on Saturday. (Andrew Couldridge/’s boxing experts predict Saturday’s super middleweight title fight between Lucian Bute and Carl Froch (6 p.m. ET, Epix/ Share your prediction in the comments below.


    Here’s my biggest question coming into this fight: Can Lucian Bute win a decision in Carl Froch’s backyard? Maybe I’m a cynic, or maybe I have seen one too many abominable decisions in boxing. The three judges are from Canada, the U.S. and Great Britain — but if Froch keeps the fight close, he may have a chance to steal it, literally.

    The advantage Bute has is that I think he has a big edge in the skills department. Bute has a stinging jab, is a savage body puncher and has a crisp uppercut that I think the aggressive Froch will walk into a few too many times. Froch belittles Bute’s competition but in his last fight Bute wiped out Glen Johnson more impressively than Froch did one fight earlier.

    If Bute is on his game, I think he wins handily. Froch is a good fighter but he’s hittable and he takes a lot of shots. Froch dismissed Bute’s uppercut when I asked him about it on Wednesday but there is no question it will be a formidable weapon in this fight. Bute has shown a wobbily chin the past but if he can keep Froch off of him early with the jab he can control this fight, perhaps even position himself for a knockout in the later rounds. Bute by split decision.


    Froch clearly wants to make some noise in this fight. He has said that fans should expect “fireworks,” and that he’ll be coming in “with all guns blazing.” The ballistic strategy is probably the right one for Froch, who at 34 and coming off the loss to Andre Ward is nonetheless in a good place in his career. A win against the unbeaten Bute, in front of Froch’s home fans, would raise his stock right back up and give him the inside track on a bout with the winner of the proposed Sept. 8 Andre Ward-Chad Dawson fight.

    Bute’s a southpaw. He’s fast and a very polished boxer, all elements that could make him a handful for Froch. The Canadian hero is also undefeated, but he has faced nowhere near the caliber of opposition that Froch has. Plus, his chin has to be in question (having capped off his decision win over Librado Andrade by getting more or less knocked out). If Froch does indeed pull the trigger from the start and can keep the pressure on, forcing Bute into a shootout, he should prevail. Froch by unanimous decision.


    Here’s a rare case of the burden of proof falling on the champion. Yes, Bute holds the IBF super middleweight title, sits at No. 11 in our pound-for-pound ratings and is undefeated after 30 fights, but the caliber of his opposition pales in comparison to Froch (whose resume includes fights with Jean Pascal, Jermain Taylor, Andre Dirrell, Mikkel Kessler, Arthur Abraham, Glen Johnson and Andre Ward) and he’s fought just one bout outside of Canada.

    An excellent puncher with great legs and above-average defense, Bute is well aware of the perils of a hometown decision. He passed up easy money to test himself in his opponent’s backyard, and I see him rising to the challenge. Bute is the naturally bigger and more mobile fighter, and he should be able to press those advantages against an opponent who’s looked a tad mechanical at times. Expect a disciplined body attack that breaks Froch down by the middle rounds, setting up an uncontroversial finish. Bute by late-round stoppage.

  • Published On May 25, 2012