Oscar De La Hoya won’t be fighting Saturday as planned, as he was pulled from the fight just eight days out, saying he’d come down with COVID, and has been replaced by Evander Holyfield against Vitor Belfort, with the event moving from California to Florida.
De La Hoya posted on Instagram that he’s back home and still planning to fight this year.
“I’m out of the hospital, I was in there for three days. COVID hit me really hard,” he said. “I was in the best shape of my life and I really can’t wait to get back in the ring. Thank you very much for all your well wishes and all your support. I appreciate it.”
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There are certainly some skeptics out there on this topic, including Vitor Belfort’s trainer, but unless Oscar De La Hoya does what Brandon Figueroa felt he needed to do and produces evidence, it’s just what it is, and truthfully I’m not sure that many people are too deeply invested in it either way.
There was curious but not huge buzz about the 48-year-old De La Hoya fighting Belfort, a 44-year-old MMA legend, with both of them years past their primes and Oscar having not fought in 13 years. This may be a situation where mostly, people are going to shrug, be happy Oscar seems healthy, and maybe even consider it better that he just doesn’t fight at all.
And I think there’s a sense that this sort of novelty boxing is wearing out its welcome, too, which was inevitable. Jake Paul will draw attention because he’s Jake Paul, a person who is currently in his fame peak, and famous with a young audience. Oscar De La Hoya is famous, certainly, but he’s the sort of famous that Will Smith is now, and Will Smith is not really headlining massive blockbuster movies anymore. They’re both in their legend years.
But he says he still wants to fight again, and on that, all we can do is wait and see. He might schedule something before the end of the year, but time is running a little thin for “before the end of the year,” too. Hopefully whatever Oscar does or doesn’t do, he’s healthy and happy.