Official Anti-Doping Complaint Filed Against Canelo Alvarez

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
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The latest development from the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) would suggest Canelo Alvarez’ anticipated May 5 rematch with Gennady Golovkin is in serious jeopardy.

News arrived today (Thurs., March 29, 2018) that NSAC executive director Bob Bennett filed an official anti-doping complaint against Alvarez after he tested positive for banned substance clenbuterol in two pre-fight drug screens.

The complaint revealed that Alvarez will face a suspension of nine to 24 months, although according to NAC regulation 467, section 34, paragraph 1(a), that could be reduced by up to 50 percent (via Yahoo’s Kevin Iole).

Alvarez is set to appear before the commission during their April 18 meeting, where he will be allowed to give a defense for his failures.

Alvarez was in Guadalajara, Mexico, at the time of his failed tests, and cited contaminated meat for the failure. Clenbuterol has been found in trace amounts in meat in several places including Mexico, and VADA has issued a warning about that exact scenario for years.

But the NSAC apparently wasn’t buying that story, at least for now, so Alvarez will most likely face a one-year suspension for his first-time offense, which is consistent with first-time offenders in Nevada. If he were to receive the 50 percent reduction, his suspension would potentially be reduced to six months, putting his earliest eligibility to return at August 18, 181 days after he failed the first test on February 17.

So the May 5 rematch – one of boxing’s most awaited current bouts – is now in serious jeopardy as the complaint against Alvarez detailed that, “Alvarez’s utilization, ingestion and/or consumption of Clenbuterol, whether intentional or not, constitutes an anti-doping violation.”

The complaint also listed that it is an athlete’s responsibility “to ensure that no prohibited substance enters his or her body…”

Golovkin’s team has insisted that they will take another fight at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on May 5 if Alvarez is unable to compete.