NEW YORK – It’s no secret that the last man standing once the final bell sounds ending the SHOWTIME® Super Six World Boxing Classic could very likely be looking at a matchup with one of boxing’s most exciting fighters, Montreal’s immensely popular and undefeated Lucian Bute.
All four of the Super Six Semifinalists have praised Bute (27-0, 22 KOs) for his prowess and winning ways in the ring, which Bute hopes to continue Saturday night when he faces former European titleholder Brian Magee (34-3-1, 24 KOs) of Belfast, Ireland, for the International Boxing Federation (IBF) Super Middleweight Championship live on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING on SHOWTIME at 10 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast) from Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada.
The fight marks Bute’s eagerly anticipated first start since signing a multi-fight agreement with SHOWTIME Sports® when he makes the seventh defense of his 168-pound crown. The telecast will
begin with the rebroadcast of the March 12 action-packed SHOWTIME PPV® main event between World Boxing Association (WBA) Super Welterweight champion Miguel Cotto and Ricardo Mayorga.
Bute said on Tuesday that he hasn’t missed a round of the Super Six fights on SHOWTIME.
“I do follow the Super Six and I know the matchups,” he said. “All four fighters are very good and I have a lot of respect for all four. I find it tough for (Arthur) Abraham to have a solution for (Andre) Ward….Glen Johnson is great boxer and a great person, but in my opinion the final will be Carl Froch vs. Andre Ward. I really can’t say who the winner will be but I think it will be an exciting fight.”
Johnson, who will face Froch in his Semifinal, calls Bute easily one of the best in his division. “Bute is a very good fighter,” he said. “He has a great jab and a good left hand. He has a great body shot that he comes into from the inside – right at the midsection - which is a hard shot to get away for a right hander. He’s very sneaky. I think he is one of the best super middleweights in the world and he has a great future ahead of him.
“He’s someone that I’m looking forward to fighting. I always look forward to fighting top fighters and I believe he is one of those and I look forward to fighting him in the future.”
Froch thinks Saturday’s Bute-Magee matchup will be a good one. “Lucian Bute is a decent fighter that deserves respect,” he said. “He’s a good technical boxer with good ring awareness and decent hand speed. He’s also shown in his last fights that he can dig a bit. Obviously all of the top Super Middleweights are tied up in SHOWTIME’s fantastic Super Six tournament and for Bute, Brian Magee is a step in the right direction towards getting any real credibility from fight fans.”
Abraham also praised Bute for being an elite fighter at the top of the boxing game. "He is a very good boxer,” he said. “He has defeated a lot of strong opponents and he is definitely one of the best super-middleweights in the world. He is fundamentally very sound because of the strong Romanian/Eastern European boxing school. And he has great fan support in Canada. He is a top fighter."
Ward declined to comment on Bute saying he’s solely focused on his May Semifinal matchup against Abraham.
Saturday night’s event is promoted by InterBox.
Steve Albert will call the action from ringside with Al Bernstein providing color commentary and Jim Gray serving as ringside reporter. David Dinkins Jr. is the executive producer of SHOWTIME Sports with Ray Smaltz producing and Bob Dunphy directing.