Jean Pascal has never been a stranger to talking trash about an opponent before a fight, and he is not making any exceptions for his next opponent, Lucian Bute. The two will square off only fifteen days from now in Montreal at the Bell Centre. HBO will televise the showdown.
Pascal harbors a bit of resentment toward Bute because the former super middleweight champion was forced to back out of an earlier date due to an injury. Pascal hopes that Bute doesn't get hurt now, and states that his opponent needs to cash in because Bute may be forced into retirement when he is finished with him.
Here is what Pascal said in an interview with Chris Robinson of Hustle Boss:
"Now we are about three weeks from the fight, so I'm crossing my fingers that Bute don't get injured. Last time, we were about three weeks from the fight before he pulled out. I really think the fight is going to happen, because if he pulls out again he will lose credibility. He has $2 million good reasons to make the fight happen. It will be a good paycheck for him. Plus, it's going to be his last fight and it's good to cash in before his last fight, because I might retire Lucian Bute."
A couple of years ago this would have been a huge fight on the boxing landscape. It's still nice but Bute's loss to Carl Froch sent his stock into a free fall and his comeback fight against Denis Grachev did little to restore hope. Pascal also saw his value drop when he retained his WBC light heavyweight title with a controversial draw against Bernard Hopkins then clearly lost to Hopkins in the rematch. Since those two bouts, he has worked as often as Santa Claus, fighting only twice since May 2011.
Nevertheless, it figures to be a solid fight in the ring and it's a fight that both men need to win in order to remain relevant at the top level. Who do you like to take it?