Jean Pascal has tested positive for COVID-19, and his planned Feb. 9 IBF light heavyweight eliminator against Michael Eifert has been postponed.
Pascal, 40, is a former titleholder and longtime contender whose career has been plenty controversial the last few years. In 2019, he beat Marcus Browne on a technical decision, winning the fight mainly because he’d scored three knockdowns, thus edging a 75-74 score on all three cards after eight scored rounds.
In 2019, he scored a debated split decision win over Badou Jack in a great fight, and before a rematch could happen, Pascal failed drug tests in 2021 that put the fight on ice. He returned to the ring last May with another fairly debatable win over Meng Fanlong on ProBox TV.
Late last year, Pascal (36-6-1, 20 KO) and Joshua Buatsi were ordered into an eliminator, but the fight didn’t happen after DiBella Entertainment out-bid Matchroom for the rights to the bout. Eddie Hearn, Buatsi’s promoter, claimed the Pascal side failed to put into writing the requested VADA testing, and thus Buatsi withdrew from the matchup.
When that happened, Germany’s Eifert (11-1, 4 KO) became next in line for some reason, despite a very “regional” pro record, and he accepted the bout.
Currently, Pascal vs Eifert is planned to be rescheduled in March, so they’re not expecting a long delay.