Bute on Jack Draw: I Started Too Late Yet Again

by David P. Greisman

Lucian Bute was one more round away from victory — at least according to the official scorecards.

Most observers had Badou Jack clearly winning over Bute this past Saturday in Washington, D.C. Yet two judges had it a 114-114 draw, while the third judge had it 117-111 for Jack.

Bute feels he did better later on in the bout and wishes he had found his groove earlier.

jack-bute-fight (8)_1

“I wanted more. I tried to give more,” Bute said afterward. “I started a bit later in the fight, just like against [last November’s fight with James DeGale]. After the 5th round, I let my hands go. I regret not starting doing it a bit sooner.”

CompuBox stats show Bute cranking up the pace beginning in the fifth. He threw 43 punches in the first, 41 in the second, 52 in the third and 58 in the fourth, but then had 70 in the fifth, 83 in the sixth, 70 in the seventh, 71 in the eighth and 73 in the ninth.

And the final three rounds brought even more volume: 87 punches thrown in the 10th, 102 in the 11th and 107 in the 12th.

“He started a bit slow but we finished strong,” said Bute’s trainer, Howard Grant.

Otis Grant, the brother of Howard and another member of Bute’s team, felt the same way:

“Lucian is in good shape. We know he has a lot in the tank. From the seventh round, we were encouraging him to push the pace, push the pace,” Otis Grant said. “We see that Badou takes the lead; he’s not the same fighter when you pressure him and he’s going back. He [Bute] only really started pushing around the 10th round. He closed. Badou was a bit tired at the end of the fight, too. if Lucian started pushing a little bit earlier the result might be a little bit different.”

Pick up a copy of David’s book, “Fighting Words: The Heart and Heartbreak of Boxing,” at or internationally at Send questions/comments via email at [email protected]

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by PunchyPotorff on 05-02-2016

[B][FONT="Arial"][COLOR="Blue"]It seems older fighters usually do start too slow and wait too long to crank it up. Frustrating to watch Bute in his last several fights, especially after seeing him as active and accurate up til then.[/COLOR][/FONT][/B]

Comment by IronDanHamza on 05-02-2016

So that's Pascal, Degale and Jack that's he's started too late and cost him. When will he learn?

Comment by MDPopescu on 05-02-2016

[QUOTE=Main Source;16664760]It's frustrating to see Bute not punching when he goes in at close range. It's like he just sits there.[/QUOTE] ... Bute has no idea about "fighting inside"... (Back in 2011, I've tried to tell his team about that...…

Comment by lefthook2daliva on 05-02-2016

How many fighters would admit it? Props to Bute; he got a gift imo, but he fought well and looks to have plenty in the tank. Was also impressed with BJ. He appears to have improved a lot since he…

Comment by Redd Foxx on 05-02-2016

[QUOTE=Main Source;16664760]It's frustrating to see Bute not punching when he goes in at close range. It's like he just sits there.[/QUOTE] I think he's just really inefficient with his movement. Moving so much that you're never really on balance enough…

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