It is hard to believe yet it is true. Jean Pascal, the two-time world champion, has been a top-ten light heavyweight for approaching fifteen years in the sport of boxing. Holding wins over a prime Chad Dawson and Badou Jack, Pascal now has an outside chance of making the hall-of-fame, and will return on Thursday, March 16th, as he faces Michael Eifert at Place Bell in Laval. The winner of this bout becomes the #1 contender for the IBF light heavyweight world title currently held by Artur Beterbiev.
Originally set for February 9th, Jean Pascal contracted COVID-19 and saw the bout postponed back to March 16th, which will be televised on ESPN+. For the 40-year-old pro boxer, training that hard for another crack at a world title was deflating and a bit of a letdown.
Pascal, who is recently defeated Fanlong Meng on ProBoxTV.com, is now entering the Bernard Hopkins part of his career as he is a forty-year-old man able to compete with men half his age. His explanation seemingly simple - Pascal looks to focus on only what he can impact.
“You have to refocus on yourself. You have to focus on what you can control,” stated Pascal. “You can control your surroundings, your training, the way you eat and sleep. I’m already 40. I know what to do in the ring.”
His opponent, Eifert, is a light heavyweight who is 11-1, who has fought in Germany for his whole career expect for two fights. Eifert has no world-class wins on his ledger, but is ranked for his win on July 16th, 2022 over Adriano Sperandio, which saw him become the IBF Intercontinental light heavyweight champion. This is the biggest fight of Eifert’s career, and he will do it in his first fight travel to North America as well.
[Testing positive for COVID-19 to Pascal] was just bad luck,” he furthered. “I’m not going crazy about all the rules for COVID, but am aware of everything.”