Word broke on Wednesday that MGM Resorts will be offering full refunds for tickets that have already been purchased for the May 5th Canelo Alvarez – Gennady Golovkin rematch, which is still scheduled to go down at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. “In the event a fan requested a refund, they could get one at the original point of sale and in full,” Gilbert Manzano, of the respected Las Vegas Review-Journal, quotes an MGM rep as stating. MGM’s decision is yet another ominous sign as the much anticipated Canelo-GGG fight remains effectively up in the air.
The mega bout was put on hold for all intents and purposes after the Nevada State Athletic Commission ruled last week that Canelo (49-1-2) is temporarily suspended. In early March, the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association informed team Canelo that it’s fighter had shown traces of the banned substance Clenbuterol in his system on two distinct occasions (2/17 and 2/20, respectively). Canelo has reportedly tested clean since that time, but the Commission suspended the middleweight until at least April 10th, when a hearing will be held. Canelo’s team has blamed the incident on Canelo consuming tainted meat, an assertion which has been met with considerable criticism.
While Mexican beef is known to contain Clenbuterol, the Commission may not be under any obligation to find the tainted meat excuse acceptable. And, should the Commission find team Canelo’s defense lacking, the bout with Golovkin (37-0-1) might well be cancelled, or at least pushed back for some time, as Canelo’s suspension could be extended. While there are many who believe the fight will go on as scheduled due to the Commission having a reputation (fair or not) for giving Canelo preferential treatment, and of putting money before all else, some well-known individuals in and out of the fight game aren’t so sure.
As things stand, HBO, which is broadcasting the bout, via pay per view, is currently behaving as if the fight isn’t even happening. What’s more, Golovkin’s own harsh words on the matter have put the Commission in a bit of a corner. Declaring that Canelo had previously cheated and that the Commission were essentially “terrorists,” the middleweight titlist effectively sided with those whose opinion is the Commission is corrupt and is hurting the sport of boxing. Such actions from Golovkin put pressure on the Commission to prove its fairness.
And now there’s the matter of tickets being refunded. While no one knows whether or not the May 5th match will go on as planned, the road has become far rockier than anyone could have reasonably expected it to.
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