But Surman's maiden Premier League goal and Defoe's first Bournemouth strike since a teenage loan spell 18 seasons ago secured precious points for Howe and vindicated the decision to sign the former Sunderland marksman.
Eddie Howe says he has been shocked by Bournemouth's dismal start.
Bournemouth are still searching a first win of the season Brighton are buzzing after beating West Brom 3-1 in their last fixture When is Bournemouth vs Brighton?
Eddie Howe's side are desperate for their first point of the season after four straight defeats.
"My biggest concern is the identity of the team, making sure that's visible to me and everyone else", said Howe.
- Defoe has now scored against 36 different Premier League teams - only three players have scored against more; Frank Lampard (39), Andrew Cole (38) and Alan Shearer (37).
"It's taken longer than we'd hoped but it's come now and hopefully that can set us off". Furthermore, we are getting a good price on the over 2.5 goals and considering the state of these two defensive units, I am expecting a high scoring game. "We've always done that and I back us to come through that again".
Chances were few and far between in the opening 45 minutes, with the Seagulls happy to absorb pressure from the home side and break on the counter.
"When you work so closely with a group every day you see the trends and you see the attitude, the willingness to do well - that's all there. we just haven't delivered on game day".
"There's no doubt though that this Friday is, by a considerable margin, the more important of the two".
"The injury for Pascal was genuine".