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Midnight Mania! Oscar De La Hoya ‘dodged a bullet’ with missed Belfort bout

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Vitor Belfort Media Workout Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

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Last September, Oscar De La Hoya was supposed to meet Vitor Belfort inside the boxing ring. Instead, “The Golden Boy” was forced to withdraw due to a case of COVID-19, and as a result, Belfort instead marched to the ring and quickly smashed Evander Holyfield in an ugly and unnecessary fight.

Belfort and his team were unhappy with De La Hoya’s withdrawal, and the Brazilian vowed to eventually fight him. Now that some time has passed, however, both parties have seemingly moved on. In fact, De La Hoya is now admitting he’s better off having miss that match up, because the then-48 year old was not at his best.

“I’m glad I didn’t fight this monster of a fighter because he’s a big guy, and he knows what he’s doing,” De La Hoya said Wednesday on “The MMA Hour” (via MMAJunkie). “He’s talented. As old as we were, we can still throw punches. We saw it with Evander Holyfield where he knocked him out. I think I dodged a bullet there.”

“I was in great shape, but I have to admit I was lying to myself,” De La Hoya said. “When I was sparring, I was getting hit a lot. So I was being stubborn. I was in great shape. My reflexes … the videos that I posted, they were legit. They were fast, my reflexes were incredible, but when I was sparring, I was getting hit too much.”

De La Hoya confirmed that his focus is on promoting now, and that he has no intentions of returning to action himself. We’ll never know if Belfort and his team’s skepticism over De La Hoya’s pullout was justified or not, but at this point, it’s become a non-issue. Meanwhile, Belfort is now chasing larger prey, like Jake Paul and Canelo Alvarez.

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