After testing positive for COVID-19, Oscar De La Hoya’s return to the ring will have to be postponed.
De La Hoya, 48, was slated to battle veteran MMA fighter Vitor Belfort in a pay-per-view event at Staples Center in Los Angeles on Sept. 11. It would have been his first fight since Manny Pacquiao stopped him in 2008, AP News reported.
The former boxing champion shared a video of himself in a hospital bed on Friday, Sept. 3, claiming that despite being completely vaccinated, he contracted the illness.
“I am currently in the hospital getting treatment and am confident I will be back in the ring before the year is up,” De La Hoya said.
De La Hoya, who has since retired as a boxing promoter, was scheduled to fight Belfort, 44, at 185 pounds, 40 pounds heavier than he was when he lost to Pacquiao.
Former heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield, who hasn’t fought in more than a decade, has agreed to fill in for De La Hoya, according to abc7ny.
The California State Athletic Commission still has to approve the fight.