Bute stops Mendy; bigger bouts ahead?

Fighting for only the second time in his native Romania, IBF super middleweight champ Lucian Bute (29-0, 24 KOs) looked sharp in stopping his mandatory challenger, France’s Jean-Paul Mendy (29-1-1, 16 KOs), in four rounds.

From the very beginning, it was clear why Bute was such a heavy favorite as he pretty much did what he wanted in the ring, walking Mendy down and, without much offense coming his way, was able to pick and choose his shots.

After taking the first three rounds on pure aggression, Bute stepped up his game in the fourth and ended the fight with a sharp overhand left that sent the challenger to the canvas, face first, and unable to continue.

This was the eighth successful defense for Bute and, likely, the beginning of a tough run of fights ahead that could include Kelly Pavlik, Mikkel Kessler, and the winner of the upcoming Andre Ward-Carl Froch Super Six tournament final.

On the undercard, super middleweight Renan St. Juste (23-2-1, 15 KOs) scored an eight-round unanimous decision over overmatched Jaudiel Zepeda (12-5-1, 9 KOs).