By: Hans Themistode
COVID-19 strikes again.
This time, to the dismay of Super Lightweight contender Mikkel LesPierre. His time on the big stage was short lived as his upcoming main event on Top Ranks card tonight from the MGM Grand Conference Center, in Las Vegas, Nevada, was cancelled due to LesPierre’s manager, Josie Tavares, testing positive for COVID-19.
The rest of the card will still go on without them, but will lose most of its star appeal without LesPierre and former world champion Jose Pedraza at the forefront.
“My manager, Jose Taveras, tested positive for COVID-19,” said LesPierre as first reported by Boxingscene. “Due to the rules and regulations set forth by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, I will be unable to fight tonight as scheduled against Jose Pedraza. I understand the severity of COVID-19. Mostly I have been working on the front lines of helping treat this virus at Mount Sinai Beth Israel—Petrie Division in Manhattan.”
The cancelation of the main event brought about a perplexing feeling to the entire storyline.
For starters, both Pedraza and LesPierre test results came back negative. Also, in Top Rank’s first fight card back from COVID-19, WBO Featherweight champion Shakur Stevenson was forced to go into his contest against Felix Caraballo without his head trainer. The reason for it was because Stevenson’s trainer is also the assistant man of Featherweight prospect Mikaela Mayer. She, of course, was taken off the card due to a positive test for the disease. Roughly one week later though, she was cleared by her own doctors as Top Ranks testing results were proven to be wrong.
In that situation, Stevenson was able to participate in his contest. But for LesPierre, he was taken off the card entirely.
Still, even with his moment in the sun taken away from him, LesPierre has decided to look on the bright side of things.
“I am devastated. This was my opportunity to showcase my talent to the world, but everything happens for a reason. This is just another roadblock in my story. I apologize to Jose and his team for any inconvenience this caused. He is a great boxer, and I hope we can reschedule the fight as soon as possible.”
As for the safety of Taveras, he’s reassured everyone that he is doing just fine. But with his man losing out on an opportunity, he feels guilty about the part he’s played in everything.
“I apologize for the inconvenience this caused,” said Taveras. “I am not exhibiting any symptoms. But I am looking forward to hopefully rescheduling this fight as soon as possible. I am devastated for Mikkel.”