by Charles Jay
Golden Boy Promotions is asking the District of Columbia Boxing and Wrestling Commission to actually take away the title Lamont Peterson won from Amir Khan back in December, and give it back to Khan.
They have also petitioned to officials in both the WBA and IBF (the two sanctioning bodies involved in that fight) to give the titles back to their boy.
As you recall, Peterson won a split decision to take Khan’s WBA title, amid some controversy surrounding the behavior of referee Joe Cooper, who took points from Khan for pushing, which, in and of itself, would have made the difference between a Khan defeat and a draw.
What Golden Boy is looking to do is have the December fight declared a no-contest, which would, in effect, vacate the result.
This all stems from the cancellation of the Peterson-Khan fight set for next Saturday, after Peterson failed a drug test with a positive reading for synthetic testosterone. This test was being administered under the supervision of the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association. It should be noted that this level of testing was requested by Peterson himself.
This is a speed bump for Khan, who was hoping to avenge the loss and use it as a stepping stone to other things, perhaps a fight against Floyd Mayweather.
Khan has been quoted as saying, “It’s not going to be fair to step into the ring with someone who is going to be on drugs and going to be cheating.”
That certainly echoes a Golden Boy line as it would concern a fighter they’re associated with – Floyd Mayweather – and his ongoing complaint against Manny Pacquiao.
Peterson has his own posture here; that this drug test failure was an isolated incident, and that he did not test positive after the fight in Washington in December.
He’s right about that, but there is another twist. Peterson has gone on record admitting that he did take testosterone pellets in November (by way of asserting it was for a medical condition), which meant, by most accounts, that he had it within his system when he fought Khan. Therefore, Golden Boy contends, he fought with the aid of a performing-enhancing substance at that time, and one that has been determined to be illegal by the testing agency that is acting at the moment.
Khan’s position may be taking the pretzel logic and stretching it just a bit too far. Khan agreed to a fight within Washington D.C., and the people over at Golden Boy Promotions, inasmuch as they consider themselves to be very smart, should have had a full understanding of the rules the commission implements. Once you are in a jurisdiction, you agree to abide by those rules.
In the days before there were Unified Rules (instituted in association with the Association of Boxing Commissions), different states oversaw bouts with very different fundamental rules. And if a three-knockdown rule was not in effect, and your fighter knocked the opponent down three times in a round and still did not win, you couldn’t then turn around and claim that by some other authority, your fighter would have prevailed, therefore, that result should be changed.
It just so happens, and perhaps it is indeed unfortunate, that not all states have the same policy regarding drug testing and enforcement, because that isn’t something the member commissions in the ABC have come together on yet.
Will this help them get there? I don’t think it will.
And so, as it stands, whatever happens in Nevada, and with the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association, doesn’t have very much to do with the District of Columbia.
Ergo, the opinion here is that Khan’s argument isn’t going to be successful, not with the boxing commission anyway. The sanctioning bodies have done some strange things in the past, and have at times tailored their own interpretation of the rules to fit an agenda, but I wouldn’t go to the bank on them reversing themselves.
My own observation is that this is a silly public relations move, and it makes you wonder about who is making these kinds of decisions in the Khan camp. Peterson failed a drug test, which already had the potential to vault Khan into the higher “moral” ground. He could have positioned it as a “forfeit” win of sorts and moved forward on an agenda that could have eventually gotten him where he wanted to go.
Now he’s looking, from at least this vantage point, as a crybaby once again; like someone who is looking to win a title belt any other way than inside the ring. It may not be that way, but it gives critics another opening to pick away at him, which doesn’t boost his credibility factor for future pay-per-view fights, where the real money is going to be made.