Four-belt Lightweight champion Teofimo Lopez (16-0, 12 KOs) tested positive for COVID-19 earlier this morning, which has forced his scheduled June 19 title defense against mandatory challenger George Kambosos Jr. (19-0, 10 KOs) to be moved to Aug 14.
The Athletic’s Mike Coppinger reported the news on Tuesday with confirmation from Triller founder Ryan Kavanaugh.
“We send our best to Teofimo and hope he gets well soon and look forward to seeing this epic battle on Aug. 14.,” Kavanaugh told The Athletic.
The 23-year-old Lopez, who tested positive for COVID-19 on a PCR test and is symptomatic, was scheduled to make the first defense of his 135-pound titles against Kambosos. The bout was set to take place in Miami and be broadcast by Triller Fight Club, who won the rights to the fight with a monstrous purse bid earlier this year.
A native of Brooklyn, New York, Lopez is coming off the biggest victory of his career: an October 2020 unanimous decision victory over Vasiliy Lomachenko. The victory made him the unified IBF, WBA, WBO, and WBC Franchise titleholder.
Undefeated at 16-0 with 12 knockouts, Lopez won his first world title with a vicious second-round knockout of Richard Commey at Madison Square Garden in December 2019.
Meanwhile, Kambosos, a 27-year-old Australian, is also undefeated in his professional career at 19-0 with 10 knockouts. He’s coming off a split-decision victory over Lee Selby last October at the SSE Arena in London, England. The victory made Kambosos the mandatory challenger to Lopez’s IBF title.
Last week, Coppinger also reported that Lopez had “signed an amended deal” with his promoter Top Rank and that the plan was for Lopez to fight on an ESPN+ pay-per-view on Oct. 2 after competing against Kambosos on Triller. That date could now be pushed back as well following today’s news.