The recent spate of failed drug tests has underscored an obvious – and troubling – problem in boxing.
Thus, THE RING Editorial Board decided it was time to make a strong statement: From now on, any fighter who tests positive for a banned substance will immediately be removed from THE RING Ratings.
That fighter would be reinstated if the testing agency reverses its decision. And he will be allowed to earn his way back into the ratings after any suspension.
Here is the new RING policy:
THE RING will remove from its ratings any rated fighter – including a champion – if such fighter at some point undergoes drug testing (Olympic-style or otherwise) and that fighter tests positve for a banned substance.
In the event that a fighter has undergone testing in which the fighter provides two samples (“A” and “B”) and the fighter’s “A” and subsequent “B” samples test positive for a banned substance or if his “A” sample tests positive and he waives his right to have the “B” sample tested then the fighter shall immediately be removed from the ratings.
A fighter whose “A” sample tested positive and is awaiting the results of his “B” sample will not be allowed to fight for a championship or rise in the ratings.
A fighter who is removed because of a postitive test will have the opportunity to earn his way back into the ratings after any suspension period is completed.
A fighter who is dropped also may be reinstated if the testing agency subsequently reverses its decision or a court of competent jursidiction finds that the test result was invalid.
This means that Andre Berto, who had been rated No. 3 in the welterweight division, and Lamont Peterson, No. 1 at junior welterweight, have been removed from THE RING Ratings.
Berto’s rematch with Victor Ortiz, scheduled for June 23 in Los Angeles, was canceled after Berto tested positive (both “A” and “B” samples) for the steroid norandrosterone. Peterson tested positive (“A” and “B”) for synthetic testosterone, which scuttled his May 19 rematch with Amir Khan in Las Vegas.
Peterson, who said he had a testosterone pellet implanted for medical reasons, has applied for a license with the Nevada State Athletic Commission and is awaiting a hearing. He must convince the commissioners that the violation was inadvertent.
Berto and Peterson were tested by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association.
Cruiserweight Antonio Tarver tested posititive for the steroid drostanolone after he fought to a draw with Lateef Kayode on June 2 in Carson, Calif. The California State Athletic Commission, which conducted that test, suspended Tarver for a year.
However, Tarver will remain in the ratings for now because he has said he will exercise his right to have his “B” sample tested. THE RING will not make a decision on its No. 6-rated 200-pounder until the process has played out.
The decision to drop Peterson elevates Nos. 2 and 3 junior welterweights Amir Khan and Danny Garcia to Nos. 1 and 2. Thus, their fight on Saturday in Las Vegas will be for THE RING 140-pound championship.
RING RATINGS UPDATE
Heavyweight: Tony Thompson (No. 10 last week) drops out after his sixth-round knockout loss to Wladimir Klitschko on Saturday in Switzerland. Odlanier Solis (18-1, 12 knockouts), coming off a unanimous-decision victory over Konstantin Airich in May, enters at No. 10.
Welterweight: Selcuk Aydin (23-0, 18 KOs) fills the opening created by the departure of Berto created, coming in at No. 10.
Junior welterweight: Denis Shafikov (29-0-1, 17 KOs) replaces Lamont Peterson in the ratings, also entering at No. 10.
Junior bantamweight: Yota Sato (No. 4 last week) switches places with Hugo Cazares (No. 3 last week) after easily outpointing Sylvester Lopez on Sunday in Japan.
Rated fighters in action this coming weekend (with current ratings)
Light heavyweight: Glen Johnson (No. 7 super middleweight) vs. Andrej Fonfara (Friday)
Junior welterweight: Danny Garcia (No. 2) vs. Amir Khan (No. 1) (Saturday)
Junior lightweight: Takashi Uchiyama (No. 1) vs. Michael Farenas (Monday)
Featherweight: Bill Dib (No. 6) vs. Juan Antonio Rodriguez (Friday)
Junior bantamweight: Hernan Marquez (No. 1 flyweight) vs. Fernando Lumacad (Saturday)
Flyweight: Sonny Boy Jaro (C) vs. Toshiyuki Igarashi (No. 9) (Monday)