Eleider Alvarez vs. Lucian Bute – Results
By Jim Dower: #1 WBC Eleider Alvarez (22-0, 11 KOs) had too much youth and too much power for former IBF super middleweight champion Lucian Bute (32-4-1, 25 KOs) in stopping him in the 5th round on Friday night in their World Boxing Council light heavyweight title eliminator at the Centre Videotron in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.
The 32-year-old Alvarez staggered Bute with a right to the head in the 5th round that caused his legs to wobble and for him to take a backwards step. Alvarez then landed a second right hand that put the 36-year-old Bute down on the canvas. Bute barely beat the count to get up, but he was too badly hurt for referee Marlon Wright to allow the fight to continue. He stopped the fight at that point.
Bute was never really in the fight. Alvarez controlled rounds 1, 3, 4 and 5. The only round that Bute appeared to win was round 2.
In the 2nd round, Bute suffered a cut on the bridge of his nose. The cut was a problem throughout the fight. In the 5th round, Bute’s left eye badly banged up from Alvarez’s hard shots. It looked really bad. Had the fight been allowed to continue, it’s unlikely that Bute would have been able to go much longer before his injured eye caused the fight to be halted.
Bute was using a lot of head movement, but he wasn’t committing to his power shots like he had in the past. When Bute would throw power shot years ago, he would sit down on the shot. His punches had a lot more power.
Tonight, Bute’s arms looked like jelly with the way he was hitting Alvarez. Even when Bute was trying to load up on his shots, he didn’t look strong. Alvarez didn’t look particularly powerful either. But he at least had some punching power going for him. The loss was really bad news for Bute’s sagging career in the sport. It looks like he’s got very little left in the tank. Bute will be turning 37 on February 28, and he fought like someone in his 40s. Bute made Alvarez look better than he actually is. Alvarez is a good fighter, but he would likely be destroyed if he were inside the ring with Artur Beterbiev or Oleksandr Gvozdyk tonight. Joe Smith Jr. would have been a nightmare for Alvarez as well.
Alvarez didn’t look that great tonight. Alvarez had a little more on his shots compared to Bute. Alvarez was throwing with more power and speed than Bute. For the most part, Bute looked very weak tonight compared to in his last match against Badou Jack. The power wasn’t there for some reason. Perhaps Bute trained too hard in camp, because his punches lacked the power that we’d seen from him in the past. It also could be that Bute simply doesn’t belong fighting in the light heavyweight division. He’s been fighting at super middleweight most of his career. When Bute has fought at light heavyweight in the past against Jean Pascal and Denis Grachev, he didn’t look good in those fights. That should have given Bute a big hint that he doesn’t belong fighting in the 175 lb. division.
For some reason, Bute chose to fight in this weight class anyway. Tonight, it bit him on the backside, because he did not have the power to compete with Alvarez. The thing is, Alvarez isn’t a big puncher for this weight class. Alvarez came into this fight with a less than 50% career knockout percentage.
Alvarez got the win, but he didn’t show the kind of power, speed or talent that will worry WBC light heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson any. Alvarez will likely be out of his league when he gets inside the ring with Stevenson.
It’s too bad the World Boxing Council didn’t have Alvarez fight someone younger and more relevant for the 175 lb. division than Bute. Alvarez should have had to fight a contender like Artur Beterbiev, Sergey Kovalev, Badou Jack, Andrzej Fonfara, Joe Smith Jr. or Oleksandr Gvozdyk. Those are the big punchers in the light heavyweight division. I would have liked to have seen Alvarez fight a relevant contender rather than Bute, whose career has really tanked in the last five years. Bute came into tonight’s fight against Alvarez with a 2-3-1 record in his last 6 fights dating back to 2012. That’s not the kind of record that you like to see from fighters competing in a WBC light heavyweight title eliminator. It appears that Bute got the chance to fight Alvarez tonight based off stuff that he’d done with his career many years ago rather than on what he’d done in the last five years, which is basically nothing. Bute’s only two wins in the last five years came against Andrea Di Luisa and Denis Grachev. Bute had a lot of problems with Grachev too, and that’s not a great fighter.
It might be in Bute’s best interest to think about retiring from boxing. He’s only won 1 fight in the last 5 years. That’s pretty sad. Bute’s last win over a decent fighter in Grachev came in 2012. You can’t count Bute’s win over Di Luisa, because this was just a stay mismatch to get Bute a confidence booser after his one-sided 12 round unanimous decision loss to Pascal in 2014.
Eleider Alvarez looks like a good fighter. He doesn’t look nearly good enough to compete with Stevenson. We’re talking fighters from different levels. I don’t know why Stevenson didn’t take the fight with Alvarez a long time ago, because he would likely wipe him off the map with ease.
If Bute is going to continue his career, then he should move back down to 168, and go after a rematch with James DeGale or go after WBA champion Tyron Zeuge. Neither of those fighters are big punchers. Bute might have a reasonable chance of defeating one of them if he doesn’t have to wait too long before getting the shot.
Other boxing results on the card:
Sebastien Bouchard UD 8 Gustavo Garibay
Adam BraidwoodTKO 5 Eric Martel Bahoeli
Francis Lafreniere SD 10 Uriel Gonzalez
Dario Bredicean UD 8 Alejandro Torres
Christian Mbilli TKO 3 Jesus Olivares
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