Carl Froch and Lucian Bute step into the ring today in Nottingham. (Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images)
Today's fight between Lucian Bute and Carl Froch for the IBF super middleweight title in Nottingham is live on Sky Sports in the UK, Epix in the United States, and PPV in Canada. We'll have live, round-by-round coverage of the full show this afternoon, and like all boxing fans, we're definitely looking forward to this one.
[ Related: Scott's Bute vs Froch Fight Preview ]
Those looking for a free, legal live stream for the fight in the U.S., look no further than EpixHD.com. We'll be covering from 5 p.m. EDT via Sky Sports.
Here's how you can watch and join us:
Fight time: 5:00 p.m. EDT (UK and Canada) / 6:00 p.m. EDT (US)
Location: Capital FM Arena - Nottingham, England
TV channel: Sky Sports 1 (UK), Epix (US), EpixHD.com (US), PPV (Canada, $54.99)
Odds: The unbeaten Bute, defending his title, is the favorite here, but the lines are pretty tight. Bute is listed at -210, -210, and -220 on three major sportsbooks, with Froch at +170, +170, and +180. Odds this close for a major fight are, quite frankly, fairly rare.
[ Related: Oli Goldstein's Look at Carl Froch ]
A look at the undercard after the jump.
Super Bantamweights, 12 Rounds
Carl Frampton (13-0, 9 KO) vs Raul Hirales (16-0-1, 8 KO)
It's become almost a running gag how much Barry McGuigan may be overstating the ability of Frampton, but you'll have to forgive "The Clones Cyclone" for his infatuation with Belfast's Frampton. Right now, this is a very strong division on the domestic scene in the UK, with Frampton probably third or fourth in the UK behind Scott Quigg, Rendall Munroe, and maybe Kid Galahad. At worst, he's a good, very entertaining fighter.
But beyond my own like of Frampton, let's be honest: Robbie Turley is a tough cookie, but past that, there's not a lot to talk about with his opponents. Mark Quon is 5'2", Kris Hughes can't punch his way out of a wet paper bag, and his last opponent, an unknown Ghanaian named Prosper Ankrah, wound up being a farce.
Hirales, 28, is a Mexican fighter, so of course the talk to hype this fight up has been "Mexican warrior" this and "tough Mexican" that. Internationally, promoters like to talk up bland, hand-picked Mexican foes as if everyone in the country who fights professionally is Marco Antonio Barrera or something. It's not the case -- there are plenty of mediocre and downright lousy Mexican fighters in the world, same as fighters from anywhere else. I do not know this to be the case with Hirales -- but thus far he's got a record not much more impressive than Ankrah's. This is not a notable fighter, and if Frampton loses, then the reality is that some screwed up scouting an opponent. Make no mistake, Hirales has not been brought to Nottingham to win.
Junior Welterweights, 8 Rounds
Pier Olivier Cote (18-0, 12 KO) vs Mark Lloyd (15-5, 3 KO)
Cote, 27, is fighting for the first time since last November, when he left jaws on the floor with his second round knockout of Jorge Luis Teron on ShoBox. Cote is an offensive powerhouse -- he lets his hands go with good speed and really big power, power that isn't even properly reflected in his KO percentage. Defensively, he's got a lot of issues, but those who have seen him fight a few times will be looking forward to seeing him fight every time out. He's that much fun when he's bringing the heat.
I don't know much about Lloyd, other than a couple of Prizefighter appearances, one in 2008 and one in February of this year. He wasn't particularly impressive either time and even though at 5'10" he'll have a height advantage here, he's also 36 years old. And, well, Teron was six feet tall. So...