Canelo Alvarez Faces Possible Doping Ban, Fight Vs. Gennady Golovkin In Doubt
Canelo Alvarez doping ban, Golovkin fight news
Mexican Alvarez, 27, and middleweight world champion Golovkin are set to headline a major HBO pay-per-view event on May 5 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Nevada State Athletic Commission executive director Bob Bennett has filed a formal complaint against Alavarez, who twice tested positive for the banned performance-enhancing drug clenbuterol in random urine tests conducted by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association in his hometown of Guadalajara, Mexico, on Feb. 17 and Feb. 20.
The commission issued Alvarez a temporary suspension last week and required him to appear at a commission hearing — either in person or via telephone — on the issue on April 10. After Alvarez explained his failed tests, the five-member commission would then vote on whether he can fight on the planned date or if his ban should be extended.
With the filing of the formal complaint, Bennett made Alvarez’s hearing part of the commission’s regularly scheduled monthly meeting on April 18, just two weeks before the fight date. This would thus make it a near-certainty that the match would not be held as planned.
“After completing my investigation, I made the determination to file a complaint against Mr. Alvarez and set the matter for a disciplinary hearing during the commission’s regularly scheduled meeting on April 18,” Bennett said.
Bennett added, however, that if Alvarez still wished to have his hearing on April 10, the commission would accommodate him.
Because clenbuterol is classified as a prohibited anabolic agent, Alvarez faces a minimum one-year suspension for a first-time offense based on the commission’s doping rules and regulations, which were overhauled in September 2016.
Any suspension is retroactive to the date of the first positive test, which means if Alvarez (49-1-2, 34 KOs) receives a one-year ban but cooperates with the commission and has it reduced to six months, he would be eligible to fight again after Aug. 17.
This means the rematch of his controversial draw with Golovkin — who most believed won — last September could be rescheduled for mid-September of this year.
Should Alvarez be suspended, Bennett stated there would be no fine imposed because there is no fight purse from which to fine him. Alvarez alleges he tested positive for the drug because he consumed contaminated beef while he was in Mexico. Many farmers in the country frequently include clenbuterol, a substance forbidden in the U.S., in cattle feed. The drug helps lower fat and raise lean muscle mass.
MGM Resorts International, the owner of T-Mobile Arena, has begun offering ticket buyers full refunds due to the likelihood that the fight will be cancelled.
Golovkin (37-0-1, 33 KOs), 35, a Kazakhstan native fighting out of Santa Monica, California, has already criticized Alvarez. Golovkin accused the Mexican last week of purposely using PEDs in training for the rematch, as well as in preparation for the first fight — for which he never failed a test.
One reported potential replacement option is fringe contender Gary “Spike” O’Sullivan (27-2, 19 KOs), 33, of Ireland, who was probably going to fight on May 4 on Golden Boy’s ESPN card in Las Vegas.