Seth Mitchell was scheduled to fight again on July 14, but the bout has been canceled due to an injured hand. The injury occurred during his last fight and has not fully healed. The announcement came on Friday from Mitchell, the undefeated Brandywine heavyweight, and his team.
A recent trip to an orthopedist showed a sprained MCL in his right hand acquired in his April 28 victory over Chazz Witherspoon in Atlantic City. It's no surprise he hurt his hand, given his hard-hitting his fight against Witherspoon.
"I'm disappointed, but I'm not down," said Mitchell. "I believe everything happens for a reason, and I'm just trying to stay optimistic."
In the coming weeks, Mitchell had been scheduled to fight Johnathon Banks in Las Vegas. Banks, of Detroit, is a former cruiserweight title challenger who has been fighting as a heavyweight since 2009, and has gone 8-0-1. He figured to be a test for Mitchell, who has been prominently mentioned as a future possible opponent for the heavyweight champion brothers Vitali and Wladimir Klitschko.
According to his manager Sharif Salim, Mitchell (25-0-1, 19 knockouts) is looking at September for his next bout, which tentatively remains against Banks (28-1-1, 18 knockouts). Mitchell will not alter his training. However, his ailing hand must remain free of contact.
Mitchell has won his last 10 fights by way of knockout, including his third round win over Witherspoon, a former top heavyweight contender. He is being particularly careful with his hand injury because he punches with such great power.
Mitchell took some good shots from Witherspoon in the first round of their fight and almost went down, but he survived the round. From that point on, Mitchell, who turned 30 last week, came forward and applied constant pressure. In turn, Witherspoon went on the defensive before referee Randy Neumann stopped the fight with 29 seconds left in the third.
In the days after the fight, Mitchell applied ice to his hand and continued to train. But the area around his knuckles remained swollen. When the swelling didn't subside, Mitchell and his team decided to see a doctor, who suggested he not fight in July.
"Seth is the hardest puncher in boxing pound for pound, and I'm not exaggerating," Salim said. We have to take that into consideration with his hand and do what's best for him."