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Thursday Boxing Main Event Canceled Due To Positive Coronavirus Test

James Murphy
by in Boxing on
  • The Thursday Top Rank Boxing main event between super lightweights Jose Pedraza and Mikkel LesPierre has been canceled.
  • Mikkel LesPierre’s manager, Jose Taveras, tested positive for the coronavirus.
  • Due to his manager’s positive test LesPierre is not allowed to fight under Nevada State Athletic Commission COVID-19 protocols.

The Top Rank Boxing event set for Thursday night at the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas and broadcast on ESPN has lost a main event. Top Rank announced earlier today that they’ve scrapped the main event fight between super lightweights Jose Pedraza and Mikkel LesPierre due to a positive coronavirus test.

Nevada State Athletic Commission protocols covering fight sports during the COVID-19 pandemic require testing of everyone entering the ‘closed system’ of the event venue. On Thursday, LesPierre’s manager Jose Taveras tested positive for the coronavirus. Obviously due to the close contact between Tavares and his fighter LesPierre would not be allowed to participate and thus Top Rank scrapped the fight.

The event at the MGM Grand Las Vegas Grand Ballroom will be held without a live audience and with a new main event. The semifinal lightweight bout between Gabriel Flores Jr. and Josec Ruiz will now top the card. The 20 year old Flores is 17-0 with six knockouts and is a highly regarded prospect.

LesPeirre released this statement following his manager’s test and subsequent cancellation of his fight:

“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 because I have been working on the front lines of helping treat this virus at Mount Sinai Beth Israel-Petrie Division in Manhattan.”

“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.”

Manager Taveras indicated that he is asymptomatic and that his thoughts were with his fighter:

“I apologize for the inconvenience this caused. I am not exhibiting any symptoms. I am looking forward to hopefully rescheduling this fight as soon as possible. I am devastated for Mikkel.”

The Thursday Night fight card now headlined by the Gabe Flores Jr. vs. Josec Ruiz main event gets underway at 8 PM Eastern/5 PM Pacific with live coverage on ESPN.

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