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Lucian Bute fights Denis Grachev this Saturday night at the Bell Centre in Montreal. For Bute (30-1-0 24KO) this is a much needed homecoming fight after his disastrous trip to Nottingham in May. He's expecting to win to get his career on track but Grachev shouldn't be underestimated.

Grachev only has twelve professional fights to his record, all wins, but last time out he got an impressive TKO win over Ismayl Sillakh, who in turn had beaten highly touted prospect Yordanis Despaigne. In his fight with Sillakh Grachev was knocked down and trailed on most of the scorecards, so by pulling off a knockout win he showed he can cope under pressure.
Bute's Recent Fights
Carl Froch - Lost
Glen Johnson - Won
Jean-Paul Mendy - Won
Brian Magee - Won
Jesse Brinkley - Won
Grachev doesn't have much of an amateur pedigree in boxing but he does have a lot of fight blood in him. He comes from a background of kickboxing and mixed martial arts, where he has won Russian kickboxing championships and was the IKF Muay Thai light cruiserweight world champion.

It's clear the man can fight and that he has the talent and drive to be a success in whatever sport he chooses, but Lucian Bute is a tough man to face for someone with only twelve fights on his record. Grachev will stuggle against a man who has spent the last three years of his career fighting at the top level.
Grachev's Best Wins
vs Ismayl Sillakh (17-0-0)
vs Eddie Caminero (7-4-0)
vs Vladine Biosse (11-0-0)
There's also Bute's mentality to consider. He is just coming off the end of a one sided battering courtesy of Carl Froch, a defeat that must sting even more because Bute was undefeated up to that point. His loss to Froch has some boxing fans writing him off as a top level super middleweight, so Bute knows he needs to put on a show against Grachev.

My prediction for this Saturday's Lucian Bute vs Denis Grachev fight is a dominant Bute knockout win, setting up a rematch with him and Froch in Montreal early next year.