By Allan Fox: In one of the worst performances of former IBF super middleweight champion Lucian Bute’s career, he was soundly beaten by Jean Pascal (29-2-1, 17 O’s) in losing a 12 round unanimous decision by the scores 116-112, 118-110, 117-111 in Montreal, Canada at the Bell Centre. Bute failed to let his hands go until the 12th round, and even then he looked afraid of getting hit by Pascal.
After the fight Bute confessed that he couldn’t throw punches because he was tired. But he said he still wants a rematch with Pascal. The Canadian fans might not be interested in seeing Bute and Pascal fight again though considering how dull the fight was. Bute might be able to convince Pascal to give him a rematch, because Pascal wasn’t chomping at the bit after the fight to call out Adonis Stevenson and Sergey Kovalev when asked if he wants to fight them by HBO.
Indeed, Pascal seemed to go out of his way not to mention wanting to fight either of them. A Bute rematch might be Pascal’s best chance of winning his next fight, because Stevenson and Kovalev aren’t afraid to throw punches and they’d make it tough on Pascal. The 12th round would likely be duplicated in every round for Pascal if he were to agree to fight Stevenson or Kovalev, because they just look so much better than Pascal right now at this point in his career.
Pascal explained why Bute had fought hard in the 12th, saying “He had to fight hard for the rematch.” When Pascal said that the Canadian fans booed, as if the last thing that they want to see is another Bute-Pascal rematch.
Pascal flurried on Bute while he was against the ropes in the 4th and 5th rounds. In the 8th, Pascal knocked Bute down with a rabbit punches to the back of the head. The referee waived off the knockdown because he’d seen where the punch had landed. In the 10th, Bute suffered a cut on the bridge of his nose from a head-butt.
Like in most of his fights, Pascal ran out of gas in the 9th, and just coasted for the last 4 rounds. Bute got the better of Pascal during those rounds, but he failed to take advantage of countless opportunities to land his power shots because he just wouldn’t let his hands go. He seemed to be frozen for some reason, and it couldn’t have been a stamina problem due to him fighting the entire fight this way until the 12th round.