Froch-Bute: Joe Calzaghe Says “The Cobra” Must Make It A War To Win

By James Slater: Not too long to go now until the potential 2012 FOTY that is Lucian Bute-Carl Froch for the Romanian’s IBF 168-pound crown. All set to thrill his passionate hometown Nottingham fans, fans he says he cannot even think about letting down, former two-time WBC king Froch is pumped up for yet another tough fight (really, not close to enough praise is given to the consistent quality of Froch’s opposition).

Froch, as we know, is used to going to war and his rock chin has allowed him to out-tough many a fine fighter. On May 26th, according retired great Joe Calzaghe, a man “The Cobra” was once desperate to fight, Froch will have to take it to the trenches once again if he is to become a three-time champion.

Speaking with U.K tabloid The Sun, “The Pride of Wales” had the following things to say about the mouth-watering showdown.

“Bute’s definitely the favourite but home advantage does count for a lot,” Calzaghe said. “If Froch can drag him into a war and make it a toe-to-toe affair, I can see the crowd spurring him on to the win. All I will say is that Bute wouldn’t have come to England unless he was confident. It’s going to be a tough, tough night but I think Froch has got a chance.”

As we know, Froch, 28-2(20) was unable to drag the gifted Andre Ward into a war last time out (although the sheer pressure Froch put on Ward did have the unbeaten star huffing and puffing a little in the later rounds), and he may have a similar problem with the tall, big for the weight southpaw known as “Le Tombeur.” But, as Calzaghe says, the crowd, of around 10,000, will do all they can to push Froch into turning in one of his best-ever performances.

Froch is the older man, with more miles on the clock, yet he really fancies this fight (what dangerous fight doesn’t Froch fancy!) - and it must be remembered that Bute has not had to really suck it up in a brutal fight for a long time. In fact, you have to go back to Bute’s first battle with Librado Andrade, from October of 2008. Okay, Bute has improved as a fighter since that controversial win (halting Andrade with a body shot in the Nov. 2009 return - body shots definitely being something Froch will have to be wary of on May 26th), but it has to be conceded that Froch is, on paper at least, Bute’s toughest foe in years.

Actually, Bute - either because he is so special or because his opposition has not been all that special, or due to a combination of the two - has had things pretty much his own way since the gruelling win over Andrade. Rest assured, Bute will NOT have things his own way a week on Saturday.

I can see Bute, 30-0(24) boxing his way to an early lead, before the sheer pressure of the stubborn as hell Froch gets to him and has him tiring, holding and fading. Froch, often a slow starter, may need a big finish to secure the win. I think this one will go the cards, and the verdict will be close, maybe even debatable. No way do I see a KO; either way.

Article posted on 15.05.2012

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