Pascal Gives Lucian the Bute

By Robert Ecksel on January 19, 2014
Pascal Gives Lucian the Bute
The turnaround in the fight was reflected by the quick turnaround in the fighters' corners.

NABF light heavyweight champion Jean Pascal decisioned former IBF super middleweight champion Lucian Bute over 12 one-sided rounds…

Saturday night at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada, NABF light heavyweight champion Jean Pascal (29-2-1, 17 KOs) from Laval, Quebec, Canada, via Port-au-Prince, Haiti, decisioned former IBF super middleweight champion Lucian Bute (31-2, 24 KOs), also from Laval, Quebec, Canada, by way of Pechea, Romania, by scores of 116-112, 117-110 and 117-111 over 12 rounds.

Fighting out of the red corner in blue trunks with white trim, the favorite Pascal, after a tentative first round, proceeded to take control of the fight.

Bute, fighting out of the blue corner in white trunks trimmed with gold, was fighting his first fight at light heavyweight and for the most part was lackluster at a higher weight.

The fight was billed as Canada’s version of the Super Bowl but fell somewhat short of expectations. After an initial feeling out round that was slow, tense, and uneventful, with Pascal landing 6 punches to Bute’s 4, things began heating up in the second.

Pascal dominated the action in round two. The southpaw Bute landed a jab, followed by a straight left to the head and body, but Pascal rocked the Romanian late in the round, establishing a pattern that would continue for most of the night.

Relying on his superior skills, Bute had a convincing round three. Pascal hadn’t found his rhythm, that was to come, and the challenger was able to use his herky-jerky style to good effect. The action was limited, however, with Bute landing only 10 of 31 punches to Pascal’s 8 of 29.

Pascal came into his own in the fourth. After absorbing a body shot and two rights to the head, Bute, wary of getting nailed, proceeded to do nothing. He’d toss an occasional jab in Pascal’s direction, but little to deter the champ or win friends and influence people watching the fight or scoring ringside. A big right at the bell sealed the deal for Pascal, at least as concerned the fourth.

Pascal swept the next four rounds. Bute was always moving. He was always feinting. But he was hardly ever punching. He landed a nice uppercut and blow to the midsection in the fifth took some of the starch from Pascal’s sails. But Pascal, a wild and unconventional ring presence, was able to land his lead right hand again and again, whether as a clean punch or a cuffing shot behind the head.

Bute visited the ropes on several occasions, pushed back by the power of Pascal’s onslaught. Experienced enough to avoid being dropped, Bute was either gun-shy or rattled by Pascal’s indifference to his wellbeing.

Feeling generous, we gave Bute two of the first eight rounds. Harold Lederman, HBO’s unofficial ringside scorer, must have been feeling niggardly as he gave Le Tombeur zip, a score which Bute’s corner might have agreed.

“Do you have gas in the tank?” they asked him after the eighth. “What’s your best punch? Your uppercut. Jab, uppercut. Jab, uppercut. Jab, uppercut. Get on him!

Round nine was all Pascal. He continued to outwork Bute, who absorbed punishment without returning fire. Pascal’s corner, naturally enough, was as pleased as punch. “You look like you’re having fun out there,” they said. “Keep your punches short, and keep your punches coming.” Bute’s cornermen, by contrast, were beginning to lose it. “You’re hesitating too much. There are more than 20,000 people watching this. Do you want this fight?”

Bute landed 4 of 15 punches in the ninth to 15 of 21 for Pascal.

Pascal drew first blood in round 10. An accidental clash of heads stunned Pascal, but brought forth a gusher from above Bute’s nose. To make matters worse, Bute’s left eye was closing.

The champion began fading in the 11th. Bute, having seen the writing on the wall, even through a veil of blood, rallied to shock Pascal and win the round. Suddenly, what had seemed obvious for the length of the fight seemed obvious no longer.

The turnaround in the fight was reflected by the turnaround in the fighters’ corners. Pascal was implored to “Stay low. Stay low. Stay low.” Bute’s corner was more eloquent: “Bring him to the ropes, where you have some zip to your punches. You have to bring him down. Go get him.”

“Go get him” is exactly what Bute did in the 12th. Whether Pascal was gassed or rattled by a hook wasn’t clear. What was clear was that Bute, facing a defeat he could ill afford, brought the fight to Pascal and put some serious hurt on the champ. He retreated to the corner where Bute threw everything at him but the kitchen sink. Whenever Pascal found the wherewithal to escape to the ring center, his legs were gone, as gone as his punches and will to fight.

Bute had landed 44 of 98 punches to 20 of 43 for Pascal in the 12th and final round. It was too little too late, but it was an exciting end to a sometimes less-than-exciting fight.

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  1. raxman 06:54pm, 01/22/2014

    Don from Prov - the only way we will know is if Bute goes back to the journeyman board for his his next fight. if he performs as he did pre the cobra.
    i think other side of the can’t perform against ’ a’ graders card is the more interesting phenomena of - only performs well against ‘a’ graders - ali being the classic example of the under achiever vs journeymen

  2. Don from Prov 07:42am, 01/21/2014

    sorry about the scrambled post

  3. Don from Prov 07:42am, 01/21/2014

    Well, I’ve heard the discussion before about boxers who at times beat B level fighters more effectively than some A level fighters do but are at a complete loss when they try to step into (against, maybe, Froch) the A level.
    And that could well be the case, but the Bute who fought Pascal (and who in his bout before Pascal as well) was NOT the same Bute of a few years back.
    I stand on that.

  4. raxman 05:23pm, 01/20/2014

    don from prov - bute could fight - but against who? gate keepers and journeyman only. and a healthy dose of C graders!! Bute hasn’t slipped; he has been exposed for what he always was.
    going back a few years when i criticized Bute for his level of opposition i was told by many that it wasn’t who he beat, it was how he beat them - its the same argument being made for GGG today. but the point always will be who you fight not how you fight. the how only matters when the who is a somebody.

  5. Ted 10:28am, 01/20/2014


  6. Don from Prov 10:19am, 01/20/2014

    “or rattled by Pascal’s indifference to his wellbeing”—

    I found that turn of phrase very funny.
    Sad to see Bute reduced to this: He could fight at one time.
    Time to move on if he can’t bring himself to engage more.

  7. Robert Ecksel 08:59am, 01/20/2014

    I’d opt for the former. Bute is a class act all the way, but a fighter who doesn’t fight has no business being in the ring.

  8. Ted 07:53am, 01/20/2014

    Was Bute that bad or was Pascal that good?

  9. raxman 05:17am, 01/20/2014

    Ted - just got back from a short vacation - missed the fight and am yet to watch. by the sounds it was as i said to irish frankie with bute being unable to fight off the back foot. i feel vindicated re Bute by the result, although i think i may have given too much props to Pascal (who proved again to have endurance issues - dawson, both bhop fight and now this one). Whether I over rated pascal or slightly under rated bute is a moot point though as neither man rates in the division

  10. Clarence George 06:38pm, 01/19/2014

    I agree, Pete, not that Eartha Kitt and Lee Meriwether were anything to sneeze at.

  11. Pete The Sneak 06:22pm, 01/19/2014

    CG, Agreed…And give me Julie Newman as Cat Woman over all others. (“I’m not just Pussyfooting around, Batman…and also “Who needs Robin, with his Holy this and Holy that”)

  12. Clarence George 06:13pm, 01/19/2014

    Only one Batman as far as I’m concerned—Adam West.

  13. Pete The Sneak 06:08pm, 01/19/2014

    beaujack, nuff said, man…On point post….CG, EBM, I have 2 words…Juevos Rancheros…Peace.

  14. beaujack 05:45pm, 01/19/2014

    I have seldom seen a hyped main event where one of the contestants [Bute] was so fearful to engage…His frantic feinting without throwing a punch became tiresome as there was no rhyme or reason for this tactic other than fear of being hit and hurt by Pascal’s right hand. Bute, as others before him found that jumping up a weight class doesn’t translate to bringing your power to a heavier division. What is frustrating to an old-timer like me is that the best light heavyweight in the world Kovalev, is avoided like the plague by Adonis Stevenson and Pascal…A shame on modern boxing where the best fighter doesn’t get a shot because of politics and rival matchmakers. Darn shame I feel…

  15. Mike Schmidt 02:03pm, 01/19/2014

    Yes Sir Sares has “the beat” on this one. Sir George was there a finer cinematic moment of special effects than when the caped crusader pulled out that shark repellant and gave it but good to Mr Shark in Batman the movie.  I digress, as usual. If Mr Pascal fights either of Superman or Kovalev he will be eggsposed. It is of course is eggsasperating that HBO will not/does not make these fights and of course it is surely beyond our eggspectations that HBO would tell Maravilla to go elsewhere if he wishes to use the eggstravaganza of HBO money to peddle a fight with Cotto rather than face eggstermination at the hands of GGG. Egg okay and adios.

  16. Clarence George 01:08pm, 01/19/2014

    Egg-cellent, Ted.  (For those of you who didn’t grow up with Vincent Price as Batman-nemesis Egghead…too bad.)

  17. Ted 11:38am, 01/19/2014

    Stevenson-Pascal-Kovalev. Let’s make something happen here.

    How about Stevenson-Pascal winner fights the Krusher where they can fill the arena.

  18. Ted 11:18am, 01/19/2014

    Yes, Bute is a great sportsman but I’m afraid the deadly Raxman may have had his number. He had a good run. Time to do something else.

  19. Ted 11:17am, 01/19/2014

    CG, check is in the mail.

  20. Rick 11:10am, 01/19/2014

    It’s too bad because Bute seems like a truly good guy. He never had to belittle any of his opponents just to prop himself up and has been gracious in both of his defeats which I’m sure is not an easy thing to do. Some of these younger guys should take note of that.

  21. Clarence George 10:40am, 01/19/2014

    Thanks, Ted, but I’m also hoping for something of a monetary nature.

  22. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 09:48am, 01/19/2014

    Robert Ecksel-Bute is clearly no Pacquiao and was gun shy last night, especially of those crude, funkyass, “flails” that come out of nowhere, from somewhere around the corner and always but always land on the back of the opponent’s head…...intentional or not these are illegal punches and warrant disqualification. He finally got psyched when Pascal starting sucking wind after the tenth, yet even when he was unloading on a stationary target in the final minutes of the last round he was not really setting down on his bread and butter left uppercut

  23. Ted 09:12am, 01/19/2014

    Rick has the beat

    Fans are fickle and I’m a fan. Adios Lucian, it’s been real.

  24. Ted 09:05am, 01/19/2014

    CG You called it! Props and kudos are in order,

  25. bk don 08:32am, 01/19/2014

    I have to agree w/Bastardo. I could see Pascal in a rematch w/the Cobra especially since it seems Froch isn’t checking for Groves in a return bout. Froch is very well known in Montreal, has expressed a strong interest in returning to North America and could make a very nice purse against Pascal. I’m sure HBO would be on board and I could certainly see Froch moving up in weight even if he weighed in at less than 175.

  26. Galvar 07:17am, 01/19/2014

    Terrible start for HBO’s boxing season…

  27. NYIrish 05:46am, 01/19/2014

    It was an ugly, clumsy, boring fight that was hard to watch. I couldn’t go the distance.

  28. EL BASTARDO MAGNIFICO 04:53am, 01/19/2014

    Sorry, was interrupted by Bronson by the Coyote/Shepherd dog. Point 2) For anybody that saw Eleider “Storm” Alvarez (no storm this night) fight Andrew Gardiner it was amazing to see his (Alvarez) after fight behavior. Many in the “inner” circle of Canadian boxing believed that Gardiner, who bears much resemblance to Chuck “The Iceman” was going to get blown out- despite the scores he was very very competitive. The last round had “the storm” running, clowning and Ali shuffling. The boos for the “house” fighter Alvarez were loud and long in that round and after the fight. When young Gardiner went to shake gloves with Alvarez he was brushed aside as was his corner. More huge boos. It never ceases to amaze me Fearless Editor- all the money, time and training put into these guys and they can do something so silly to alienate a fan base- clowning at the end of a tough fight and acting like a jerk afterwards. Alvarez’s home base is Montreal- he is a transplanted Columbian from “Apartado” and last night every time young Gardiner’s mug was put up on the screen there were cheers. As for “the storm,” well, much like his home town, his fans were going “Apartado” in a hurry. Marketing in and out of the Ring please and thanks Storm.

  29. EL BASTARDO MAGNIFICO 04:44am, 01/19/2014

    Two other notes before I bid adios on this thread Fearless Editor. 1) Messr’s Marc Ramsey, Russ Anber and, lest ya’ll forgot, Roy Jones, had a fight plan and worked perfecto. Captain Ramsey, as Chief Second would give instructions, and then “Roy” and Jones Jr would add his in between round instructions- it was organized and as disciplined as was Pascal’s approach to it ( whether you liked the plan or not it sure worked, inside and out and outside and in). Now on the other hand I am not sure what Lucien’s “B” plan was because after five rounds it was clearly obvious that the “A” was a “C” when a “B” was needed. He persisted round after failing round on the same head and shoulder feint, beat to the punch, unable to fight inside, game plan. No concept of infighting after 30 plus fights, and the way oft too much of modern scrappers using the hands up shell defence and wait for the other guy to stop punching me all over the place approach. Gimme Rigo please- make em miss make em pay- not let me shell up, take a bunch of shots to the body, arms, side of the head, and start all over from a distance when the ref hopefully says, BREAK. No doubt if you were a Bute fan it was frustrating to watch. I was not rooting one way or the other

  30. Clarence George 04:20am, 01/19/2014

    Can’t say the fight fell short of my expectations, as I expected Pascal to win by unanimous decision after 12 rounds of, um, action.  And now the Haitian-Canadian is the NABF light heavyweight champ, is he?  Quick, the confetti!

  31. EL BASTARDO MAGNIFICO 02:11am, 01/19/2014

    Based on last night Pascal would be ill advised at this time, of which he most certainly is not, to get in the ring with Kovalev. It is entirely unlikely we will see him in with Superman as both he and Adonis are under the GYM umbrella. Again, not an advised fight for Pascal based on last night. I suspect a return revenge engagement with the Cobra would be the right spice. As for Bute and what was viewed last night; Bute has represented boxing with class and boxing has done Bute well. He is a young man of 33, University educated, and a well spoken multi linguist. There were a number of times last night that he had the poorly balanced Pascal in a miss and opportunity position to hit. He did not and he would not engage the old adage of make em miss, make em pay. As good a time as any, with chin held high in full honor of a fine career, to walk away with health and wealth. Are there other fights out there to make for Bute- sure, but why at this stage.Nothing to prove and lovely life ahead. Last note—just a really shitty fight to watch!!!!

  32. nicolas 01:54am, 01/19/2014

    While I somewhat agree with Rick, I would be very curious how Bute would do against these two fighters. Bika and Berio, two fighters that Bute beat in 2007. Bika does have the WBC Super middleweight title at this time, though no one really can take him that seriously as a champion. Berio, I believe is still fighting, and has only lost once since losing that IBF title to Bute. It is interesting because perhaps from what I have read, Bute has lost his confidence. How he would do against these two now would be interesting. Perhaps fighting those two men, might bring him some confidence back if he can beat those two men again. I have said that boxing in this day and age, boxers are not fighters anymore, they are commodities. Since the advent of the IBF and WBO, this has further perpetuated this. While Jake lamotta found it great that many fighters now could be world champs, because in his day, some fighters who should have been were not given the opportunity, it has allowed many boxers to be champions who should not. It has also perhaps hindered fighters like Bute from really being better, though his promoters in Montreal perhaps benefited him by the money he did make, and of course making him a box office star. It is always funny to see these fighters at ring side, seeing Bute looking like a movie star at some of those shows, probably told he had to be there so that they could sell this man as a product. One has to admire I believe Johnny Lewis back in the 80’s when he trained Jeff Fenech, Fenech I believe admitted that he was full of himself when he won the IBF bantamweight title. lewis however would have none of that, and told Fenech he would leave if he did not leave that attitude. What that allowed Fenech to do was to really go after greatness, which he achieved in my view as the best Australian fighter ever. many boxers today, Bute included, seem to not to want to climb a mountain so that they can reach the top, but they will get to a ledge, and delude themselves, for years into thinking that they are on the top, looking down at the bottom, but not seeing the distance still to the top of the mountain. In closing one of the greatest delusional piece was when Arthur Abraham defeating the first time Robert Stieglitz commented how great it was to be a world champion again, seeming to forget that he had lost pretty badly to Andre Ward and Carl Froch, who at the time held the other two belts.

  33. Rick 12:56am, 01/19/2014

    If that’s all Bute has left he needs to go ahead and hang em up. I just don’t understand the complete lack of urgency on his part. If he would’ve engaged more frequently in the early rounds Pascal would have been completely gassed out by the late rounds and that final round of Bute’s would’ve probably been enough to stop him or have it waved off. It was apparent to me just from the look on Bute’s face as he stared into the camera during his ring entrance that he would’ve rather been anywhere else. I don’t see where Bute goes from here, or Pascal honestly. Neither have a chance against the top three in the LH division. And why the hell wasn’t Bute’s corner on the ref about about all the punches to the back of the head? They may not have been intentional but that’s irrelevant, still an illegal blow and for good reason.

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