Around the Boxing World: Bute, Rigondeaux and Klitschko Win
By Gabriel Montoya, from (March 20, 2011) Special to Doghouse Boxing
It was a busy day in the world of boxing, proof that this international sport is solid down to it’s foundations as Ireland, Quebec and Germany all had near or full capacity crowds cheering on titleholders in various weight classes from various ethnicities. Maxboxing was there in spirit to take in all the action.

The Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec

The house was packed and the deck was stacked as hometown rock star/super middleweight titleholder Lucian Bute, faced Ireland’s Brian Magee in a one-sided but tactical affair that featured a crafty set of southpaws going at it in a tight, tense fight that broke open in the middle rounds. Early on, Bute was tentative, moving and sliding around the ring, looking to find a home for his signature uppercut to the head or body. Magee, with his stand-up hands, flat-out style, proved a little hard to figure out for the cautious Bute who ate a hard left hand early that shook him up a bit.

Bute would get going though in the middle of the fight, working his way in to land his right hook and uppercut to the chest of Magee, who offered resistance in the form of footwork and some one-twos but not much else. In the fifth, Bute got off a nice right hook but Magee just kept coming forward, not letting his hands go in much more than two-punch combos. Magee would slip in this round off a right hook miss. The capacity crowd went nuts but nothing actually landed on either end.

However in the sixth, a nice counter Bute right hand off a missed Magee left hand dug into his gut, dropping the Irishman to the canvas. He popped back up right away and survived the round off tricky footwork and aggression. Magee may have been outgunned but he was game as all get out.

Bute found what he was looking for, however, and in the seventh, he scored two knockdowns off the same uppercut to the right side of Magee’s rib cage. The first was ruled a low blow but replays showed otherwise. Bute went right back to the same spot, actually just a little lower this time, and Magee said “Hello” to the canvas once more. This time, Bute looked to referee Pete Podgorski like, “Was that legal enough for ya?” and it was. Depending on how you look at it, Magee was saved by the bell as he rose to his feet, obviously in pain from the rearrangement of his ribcage.

From then on, it was mop-up duty as Bute stayed cautious but ramped up the ol’ ultra-violence, digging to the body and making those high hands of Magee, 34-4-1 (24), drop a little lower. By the tenth, it was a matter of time and the tactical technician finally found what he was looking for. Off two nice body shots that dropped Magee’s hands, Bute landed a beautiful left uppercut to the jaw of Magee, who took a moment to realize he shouldn’t be on his feet any longer. The ref waved it off as he landed at 2:04 of the tenth round. With the win, Bute moves his ledger to 28-0 with 23 KOs and sets up a possible fight with Mikkel Kessler, who was ringside.

On the undercard, Vanes Martirosyan, 29-0 (18), made quick work of Bladimir Hernandez, dropping the overmatched foe with a hard right hand at 57 seconds of the second round. Martirosyan, a Freddie Roach protégé and Top Rank fighter, looked solid and aggressive in the outing, though he met little resistance from the paunchy Hernandez, now 18-5 (16). Hopefully a step-up bout is on the horizon.

City West Hotel, Dublin, Ireland

Exiled to Ireland after a lackluster performance in his first title fight last November on the Manny Pacquiao-Antonio Margarito undercard, it didn’t take a translator for Cuban Olympian sensation Guillermo Rigondeaux, 8-0 (6), to get the message: be exciting and live up to your prodigious potential or its foreign TV bouts for good. “El Chacal/The Jackal” heard the message loud and clear and took it out on Limerick’s Willie Casey, 11-1 (7), in one explosive round. The southpaw Rigondeaux went to work right away, digging to the body and coming up to the head of the southpaw Casey, who wobbled and then fell after a monster left uppercut rocked his world. He rose quickly but Rigondeaux showed he can finish like a champ, swarming him with body shots before dropping in a straight left that knocked Casey back into the ropes and down again. Casey got up gingerly this time and was soon finished off by yet another barrage by “The Jackal,” who hit him from all angles, en route to a third knockdown before the ref mercifully pulled the plug at 2:38 of the first.

The Lanxess Arena in Cologne, Germany

The day started off in Germany in front of 19,000 as WBC heavyweight titleholder Vitali Klitschko, 42-2 (39), was thought to be in the fight of his career against Cuba’s 2004 Olympic gold medalist Odlanier Solis, 17-1 (12),. who showed up in shape for the first time in a long time. Solis boxed well on the outside, staying out of the reach of the awkward Klitschko. For most of the round, Solis seemed to be working a plan which would be fully revealed later. Then just as the round ended, a short right to the temple got past the guard as Solis leaned forward. He wobbled and fell. Before the punch landed, Solis seemed to extend his left leg too far in front of him so he fell awkwardly. He rose and seemed badly hurt but it was hard to tell if it was to the dome or his leg, so referee Jose Guadalupe Garcia waved it off as Solis grimaced in pain. The time was 3:00 of the first round. Solis claimed later on that he was hurt to the knee but Klitschko was not having it and admonished him in the ring. It was a sad day for Solis, who came in fighting at 246 pounds after fighting in the disappointing 250-260 range for much of his career. Some speculated that losing the weight all at once rather than maintaining good training could have contributed to the injury.

All in all, an odd and unexpected day at the fights but proof at the very least that Rigondeaux can be exciting; Bute needs to fight someone closer to his skill level, and getting into shape for one fight is not going to get it done. Oh yeah, and boxing is far from a dying sport.

You can email Gabriel at, follow him on Twitter at and catch him on each Monday’s episode of “The Next Round” with Steve Kim or tune into hear him live on Thursdays at 5-8 PM PST when he co-hosts the BlogTalk radio show Gabriel is a full member of the Boxing Writers Association of America.

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