David Benavidez has tested positive for COVID-19, Mike Coppinger reports, and it’s going to lead to a postponement of his scheduled Aug. 28 Showtime main event against Jose Uzcategui.
The main benefit for Benavidez-Uzcategui, other than the fact that it figures to be a firefight for however long it lasts, was probably going to be some extra on-air promotion for the Aug. 29 Showtime pay-per-view headlined by Jake Paul vs Tyron Woodley, which will now have to find its way without that last-minute hype.
Benavidez (24-0, 21 KO) has been one of boxing’s standout young fighters in recent years, but has had various issues outside of the ring in that same time span. He was stripped of the WBC super middleweight title in 2018 when he tested positive for cocaine, and was stripped of the same WBC super middleweight title in 2020 when he missed weight for his fight with Roamer Alexis Angulo. Not saying these things — cocaine, missing weight, COVID — are related or even part of a pattern, just a series of things that have thrown Benavidez’s rise a little off track here and there.
Benavidez, 24, last fought on Mar. 13, stopping Ronald Ellis in the 11th round.
Uzcategui (31-4, 26 KO) is a former IBF 168 lb titleholder who lost that belt to Caleb Plant in 2019, then was upset by Lionell Thompson later that same year. His last three wins have all been over club-level opponents, but the 30-year-old Venezuelan was hoping to get back in the race.
It’s expected that Benavidez-Uzcategui will be rescheduled.