James DeGale is happy to face Lucian Bute on his home turf next month because he is “too good” for the former holder of his IBF super-middleweight title.
DeGale has taken the unusual step of conceding home advantage when making the first defence of his belt against fellow southpaw Bute in Quebec, Canada on November 28, live on Sky Sports.
However, the Londoner insists his career path is on a different plane to the man who won the IBF title in 2007 and defended it nine times before Britain's Carl Froch relieved him of it in Nottingham in 2012.
The 2008 Olympic champion, whose sole professional defeat in 22 fights was to bitter domestic rival George Groves, is confident he can end the career of a fighter who was dismantled by Froch inside five rounds.
"You can see what kind of man I am; I'm going to Canada to give Lucian Bute a chance to box for my world title," said DeGale.
"The way I'm feeling, I'm in top shape, it's going to be hard to beat me. My journey is just starting, his is coming to an end.
"I want the big fights, I want to unify titles. First I have to beat Bute and he wants his old belt back. [But] I'm too young, too fresh, and too good. Much too good."
Bute has struggled to convince in his three fights since losing his undefeated status to Froch and was handed his second defeat in 34 fights by Jean Pascal up at light-heavyweight in January 2014.
He bounced back with a fourth-round stoppage of Italian Andrea Di Luisa in August and will now challenge for his old title in the province where he first laid hands on it eight years ago.
"Last time I was here I lost my title in 2012 but that is in the past," said Bute, who has since switched trainers to Howard Grant.
"I have a new team behind me and I will become a world champion again. This is big for me because I had this belt for five years. On November 28 I get it back.
"Thanks to James for the opportunity. I have never lost in Quebec City - I will be the new world champion."