The 29 year old Romanian born Quebec resident, excluded from Showtime TV´s Super Six World Boxing Classic, made the fourth defense of the IBF super-middleweight crown that he won from Alejandro Berrio in 2007.
Bute (25-0, 20 ko´s) dominated the first three rounds with aggressive boxing, but the 31 year old Andrade (28 – 3, 21 ko´s) always looked dangerous. Bute´s corner men showed concern between rounds that Bute was ´´fighting Andrade´s fight.“
Late in the fourth, Bute floored the normally cement chinned Andrade with a five punch combination. The Mexican hit the deck for only the second time in his career, but was up at six and seemed fine when he got to his feet. However moments later Bute connected with a short left hook to Andrade´s ribs, sending the Mexican to the canvas again. Andrade, obviously badly winded, took the full count on all fours, shades of Oscar De La Hoya v Bernard Hopkins.
On this performance, Lucian Bute can give any of the super-middleweights competing in the Super Six World Boxing Classic a tremendous fight. The transplanted Romanian is idolized in Quebec, and more than 16,000 fans packed the Pepsi Coliseum in Quebec City to watch what was possibly his best ever performance. Andrade came awfully close to knocking Bute out in the twelfth round last year, and I personally thought the Mexican would be too tough and too tenacious for the champion. How wrong I was! Bute won by taking the fight right to Andrade, a ploy that had seemed suicidal before the bout, but paid of spectacularly.
The next bout in the Super Six series features the awesome Arthur Abraham against the sleep inducing Andre Dirrell in a fight that will take place somewhere in the States on the 23rd of January. After that, Carl Froch defends his WBC version of the belt against Mikkel Kessler in what will be the most mouth-watering encounter of the series so far. That bout is penciled in for March the 6th in Denmark. Finally, Andre Ward will defend his newly won WBA super-middleweight title against Jermain Taylor in Oakland, California (date TBA). The truth is, Taylor has lost four of his last five fights, and been knocked out, and knocked out badly, in three of those. Taylor is a great fighter, and a fine, noble man. But he is not a super-middleweight, he needs a long rest, and he should no longer take part in this tournament, for the sake of his own health if nothing else.
If Jermain Taylor does indeed withdraw from the Super Six series, Lucian Bute should be drafted in. Can he win the tournament? On current form, he would be a nightmare for Froch, Kessler and Dirrell, but I think Ward and especially Abraham would have too much for him. But as Bute would have to leave the sanctuary of his beloved Quebec to compete in the series, we are unlikely to be seeing any of these fights anytime soon.
CURRENT SUPER SIX ODDS: ANDRE WARD 6/4, ARTHUR ABRAHAM 9/4, CARL FROCH 9/2, MIKKEL KESSLER 11/2, ANDRE DIRRELL 14/1, JERMAIN TAYLOR 33/1 Boylesports