By Osman Rodriguez
IBF super middleweight champion Lucian Bute (30-0) is viewing his upcoming opponent, former two time beltholder Carl Froch (28-2), as the reigning champion. Bute faces Froch before a hometown crowd of thousands on May 26th in Nottingham. Bute captured the title in 2007 and defended it nine times. This is the first defense for Bute in his opponent's backyard.
''In my head, I'm going to England to put my belt on the table, as if the title is vacant and that I have to win it to be world champion. 'There will be 10,000 people there cheering for him. 'There will be lots of noise. But I'm going there to win and come home with the belt. Whether it goes to points or ends before that. My goal is to win,'' Bute said.
''The press conference, the weigh-in, everything. The adrenaline; the emotions. It's the first time for me to go outside, to his hometown. It's not easy psychologically; I'm ready for that. It's time to prove to everybody that I'm the best fighter. When you're a good fighter, you fight everybody, everywhere.''
Bute has a lot of respect for Froch and sees him as a very tough opponent. But he doesn't see Froch being capable of being able to deal with his superior hand speed.
"Froch is a good fighter. He's a tough, strong and aggressive. But I have the speed, which he doesn't. I believe the fighter with the speed is the fighter who has the advantage," Bute said.