The highly anticipated Canelo Alvarez vs. Gennady “GGG” Golovkin rematch is presumably off after Nevada State Athletic Commission Executive Director Bob Bennett filed a formal complaint against the Mexican boxer for doping violations.
Alvarez tested positive for the banned performance-enhancing drug clenbuterol during two random urine samples conducted on February 17 and 20 in his hometown of Guadalajara, Mexico.
His camp credited contaminated meat, as cattle farmers there have been known to illegally mix clenbuterol into feed in order to produce leaner livestock.
Bennett apparently isn’t buying the excuse.
“The presence of clenbuterol in Alvarez’s urinalysis specimen samples constitutes anti-doping violations,” Bennett declared. “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.”
Following a controversial draw in September, Alvarez and GGG are scheduled to rematch at T-Mobile Arena on May 5. Canelo, who many thought lost the first fight, has been the underdog throughout the betting.
Canelo Alvarez and his legal defense will need to appear before the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSGC) either in person or by telephone to explain the failed results at the April 18 meeting. Bennett has also afforded Canelo an April 10 special hearing, should the fighter wish to make his case earlier.
After hearing from Alvarez, the five-member NSGC will vote on whether disciplinary action is warranted. But regardless of what is said, the odds strongly favor a suspension that will likely force the May 5 fight to be called off.
Clenbuterol is classified as a prohibited anabolic agent under NSGC regulations. Those found in violation are ineligible to engage in sanctioned bout in Nevada “for a period of at least nine months, but not more than 24 months, as determined by the Commission.”
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Alvarez denies intentionally doping, and says he will work to “clarify this embarrassing situation.” But the NSGC is clear when it comes to doping intent, and how it specifically doesn’t matter in relation to discipline.
MGM Resorts is issuing full refunds for ticket purchases. Odds have also disappeared at many sportsbooks, with gamblers being offered refunds on their ticket slips.
Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions, which is organizing the fight, is reportedly looking for a replacement. But pay-per-view network HBO likely won’t be too keen on televising a fight with a lesser opponent.
The first Alvarez vs. GGG spectacle generated the third-highest gate in boxing history. It also reportedly sold 1.3 million PPV buys in creating over $100 million in TV revenue.
Floyd Mayweather, the only boxer to defeat the 49-1-2 Alvarez, hopes Bennett and the NSGC opt not to enforce punitive action. But if they do, Money believes the two boxers should relocate outside Nevada.
“If he got busted or whatever, from here all the way to the fight it should be random blood and urine testing and they should fight,” Mayweather opined. “The fight still should happen.”