Bute-Andrade - Are You Kidding Me?
26.10.08 - Bill Calogero - TheDailySports.com - Friday night’s fight between Lucien Bute and Librado Andrade for Bute’s IBF Super Middleweight Championship Belt went from a superb boxing performance to by far the worst injustice in the sport of boxing that I have seen in a very long time. This, in my opinion was more blatant of a “long-count” than Dempsey vs. Tunney. Watching the fight, all I could think was “Are you kidding me?..”
Article posted on 26.10.2008
First of all, lets make no mistake Lucien Bute dominated this fight. On my un-official scorecard, I had given Andrade only one round going into the twelfth and final round. Bute dominated the fight with his total output of punches and movement. There was no question in my mind that on the cards, Bute had this fight in hand. He was throwing punches in bunches, landing most. His jab was working, was landing power shots and for all purposes, was demonstrating to all that were watching, the “perfect fight”. Until the twelfth round.
When the final round began, two things happened that drastically changed this fight. First, Andrade’s corner told him that he HAD to knock out Bute to win the fight. This was 100% true and like all fighters that have three minutes to win a fight, Andrade’s plan was to come out swinging. The other component that changed this fight came from the opposite corner. Instead of telling Bute to coast and stay on his toes and do what he had to do to get to the final second of the bout, Bute’s corner told him to go out there and be aggressive and go for the Knock out. Are you kidding me?
If there is anyone out there who watched this fight and felt that Andrade did NOT batter Bute all around the ring for the entire round leading up to the KNOCK OUT, I would like to meet you and your seeing eye dog. This round wasn’t even close. I could tell after thirty seconds that Bute was on his way out. To be honest, there were several points during the round that the referee could and should have given Bute a standing eight count, but did not. Nonetheless, there it was, right in front of us being broadcast live on ShowTime, what turned out to be the worst and biggest injustice done to a boxer inside the ring in years.
With approximately fifteen seconds left in the fight, Andrade had Bute against the ropes beating him virtually senseless on his feet. A crushing right hand sent Bute reeling backwards across the entire ring until he landed against the ropes, which clearly kept him on his feet. Andrade was there and with about three seconds left in the round, Andrade landed another right that sent Bute, who was still out on his feet, crumpling to the canvas.
The dream ending for ANY fighter regardless, of his style. A last second KO. How exciting! As a boxing fan, is there any better ending? Even if it’s not “your guy”, isn’t it exciting to see, especially from a guy who had clearly been on the losing end of a one-sided contest? Unfortunately, referee Marlon Wright, the hometown referee, decided to forget how to count. What took place next is the robbery of all robberies. Technically, the bout was over, except for one small problem, “A fighter could not be saved by the bell in the final round”. This was the final round and there was a fighter lying on the canvas. Therefore, by rule, the fighter had to be given the ten-count. If he gets on his feet by the count of ten, the fight is over and it goes to the scorecards. If he does not make it to his feet, the fight is still over, but he loses by KO.
Before Wright began his count, he wasted two seconds directing Andrade to a neutral corner. Then he begins his count at four, which was the “official count” which began from the time-keeper at the point Wright ruled the knock down an official knock down. So far, so good. This is all according to the rules. When he reached the count of six, he spun around and began yelling at Andrade to go back to the neutral corner. I would have been totally fine with this if Andrade was even close to the fallen Bute…even half way across the ring, but this was NOT the case. Andrade was less than four-feet out of the neutral corner. He wasn’t even in the televised picture! Wright successfully wasted another four seconds, but since he was already at the count of six, the “official time keeper” should have reached ten, right?
WRONG! Wright goes back to a STILL LYING ON THE CAVAS Bute and picks up with the count at six AGAIN! As he slowly said seven, eight, nine, Bute got to his feet at ten and the fight was over. Are you kidding me?
Librado Andrade should have been declared the winner by Knock Out at 2:58 of the twelfth round. End of story. This kind of action by the referee is worse for boxing than the BS mandatories we deal with, the collection of “World Champions” the phantom ranked contenders, the built up fighters, etc., etc., etc. All of this we can actually overlook, but to steal a last second, come from behind victory from a fighter, whose style it is to wear an opponent down by letting him pound on him and then unleash his own attack to compensate for his own lack of boxing ability, is nothing less than a travesty of justice.
For the Canada Boxing Commission and all the officials that could of taken control of this situation ringside, they too are at blame. Its bad enough for a fighter to have to go on foreign soil and expect to win a fight, especially with such an accomplished fighter as Lucien Bute, but to have to beat the fighter AND the referee AND the commission EVEN after obviously knocking out your opponent, is impossible. If there ever was a cause for use of a replay or to issue a protest, this fight is one that clearly warrants it.
Lucien Bute, despite a superb performance, should have left the arena suffering the first loss of his career, but thanks to the “Home Town” stays undefeated and improves to 23-0 (18 KOs). Librado Andrade gets robbed in front of millions and drops to 27-2 (21 KOs).
Keep in mind, the better fighter here is clearly Bute, but the better fighter does not always win. All I can do is ask one question to one person. The person I want to ask is the classless referee, Marlon Wright. My question is; Are you kidding me?
All comments are welcomed and encouraged. I want to hear what YOU think! To comment on this article, please direct all emails to Billy@TalkinBoxing.com. To listen to more on this, tune into the “Talkin Boxing With Billy C” and the “Billy C Morning Show” Radio Programs this week. Go to www.TalkinBoxing.com for broadcast locations or listen to the replay on www.EastSideBoxing.com.
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