Lucian Bute Likely To Face Brian Magee March 19th

By James Slater - Sources such as the BBC are reporting how it looks extremely likely that Lucian Bute will face Northern Ireland’s Brian Magee in his next fight. The unbeaten Romanian who is Canadian-based and holds the IBF 168-pound crown has just signed a deal with Showtime, and the Magee defence will be his first fight in the new deal.

Magee, though no household name in the U.S, is an experienced operator who has been in with and tested a number of good fighters in his time. The 35-year-old is 34-3-1(24) and he has been stopped just once as a pro, by current WBC super-middleweight king Carl Froch.. “The Cobra” KO’d Magee in the 11th-round of a British and Commonwealth title fight clash back in 2006, and before that Magee lost close 12-round decisions to Vitaliy Tsypko and Robin Reid.

Since the Froch loss, the man from Belfast has remained unbeaten, winning nine and drawing one. And this year the southpaw won and retained the European title. On good form as of late, and used to winning in the homeland of his opponent, Magee is nonetheless a surprise choice of challenger for Bute.

Bute, a southpaw like his would-be challenger (the fight, BBC reports, is due to be announced officially later this week), is seen by many as THE best 168-pounder in the sport today. Despite not being a part of the ongoing “Super Six” tournament, Bute has made a big name for himself in the U.S. The 30-year-old is currently 27-0(22) and he is coming off dominant stoppage wins over Edison Miranda and Jesse Brinkley.

Some fans have openly criticised the quality of a number of Bute’s challengers, and these same fans may well feel disappointed to learn “La Tombeur” is facing Magee next. Fans want to find out just how good the wicked body puncher is and, with all due respect to Magee, the Northern Irishman will not get us any closer to answering this question.

To my way of thinking, Magee - who has been decked a number of times in his career - will have to fight the fight of his life if he’s to have any chance against Bute. Magee deserves huge credit for the way he went to Denmark to stop Mads Larsen and win the European belt, but Bute is world class, not European class. And whatever his critics say, Bute is looking like me might be a little bit special. Magee, though tough, game and experienced, is not.

The fight looks set to go ahead in Canada on March 19th, and unless we see a huge upset, Bute will keep his perfect record and IBF belt. Magee will do very well to see the final bell in this one.

Article posted on 17.12.2010

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