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Salido Upset by Roman and Farmer Robbed by Ogawa


By: Ken Hissner

At the Mandala Bay Hotel & Casino Events Center Saturday night promoters Fernando Beltran of Promociones Zanfer, Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing, Tom Loeffler of K-2 Promotions and Oscar de La Hoya of Golden Boy Promotions presented the vacant IBF World Super Featherweight title fight.


Photo Credit: HBO Boxing

Super featherweight southpaw Tevin “American Idol” Farmer, 25-5-1 (5), of Philadelphia, PA, was robbed of the vacant IBF World Super Featherweight title losing a split decision to Japanese champion Kenichi Ogawa, 23-1 (17), of Tokyo, Japan, over 12 rounds.

In the opening round thru the third it was southpaw Farmers quickness of hand and feet that dominated Ogawa. Ogawa came back to take the fourth round getting in with rights to the head but it was a close round. Farmer took over again in the fifth thru the eighth rounds with his unusual style of which Ogawa had no answer. Ogawa won the ninth round but Farmer won the tenth and eleventh with Ogawa winning the final round. Kenny Baylis was the referee.

Judge Tim Cheatham had it 116-112 for Farmer while judge’s Max DeLuca had it 115-113 and Burt Clemens 116-112 for Ogawa.117-111 This writer had it 117-111 Farmer.

Trainer Raul “Chino” Rivas saw his fighter Jason Sosa robbed a week ago and his fighter Tevin Farmer robbed tonight.
In the main event the former WBO World Featherweight champion, Mexican Orlando “Siri” Salido, 44-14-4 (31), of Phoenix, AZ, was stopped in the 8th round by Miguel “Mickey” Roman, 58-12 (45), of Chihuahua, MEX, in an upset scheduled ten.

This fight was a war from the opening bell. Salido took the first round and Roman came back in the second taking a close round. In the third round it was Salido’s body work getting the edge over Roman. In the fourth round Roman dropped Salido to take the round.

In the fifth thru the seventh rounds Salido came back with a furious body attack though Roman gave as well as he took. In the eighth round Roman again dropped Salido with a flurry of punches. In the ninth round the war continued but Salido had obviously got the worst of the war. Roman dropped Salido with body shots against the ropes and referee Robert Byrd waved it off.

“I want to thank God and my trainers for this win. I want a title fight,” said Roman. He was very emotional. “I am retiring,” said Salido.

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Best 10 Boxing Fights of 2016


Best 10 Boxing Fights of 2016
By: Jordan Seward

With the new year approaching it’s time to reflect on the best boxing action of 2016, so in no particular order….

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Orlando Salido vs Francisco Vargas

The two Mexicans treated us to a classic right up to the final bell for Vargas’ (23-0-2) WBC World Super Featherweight title. Vargas, coming off the back of Fight of the Year for 2015 faced a true, steely warrior in the 36-year-old Salido (43-13-4). It was a back-and-fourth slug fest between two champions who don’t know when to quit. In the end the pair couldn’t be separated and the judges correctly scored it a draw.

Tony Bellew vs Ilunga Makabu

The real life rocky story that saw Bellew (28-2-1) finally crowned a world champion. Just after starring in the new rocky film ‘The Bomber’ got his third bite at the cherry facing a dangerous and feared Congolese who had chalked up 18 knockouts in 19 fights. A packed crowed inside his beloved Everton football club’s stadium were stunned when Makabu (19-2) sent Bellew rolling over at the end of the first. The Everton man climbed off the canvas Balboa esque and rallied to stop Makabu in the third with a flourish of heavy punches to claim the vacant WBC World Cruiserweight strap.

Dillian Whyte vs Dereck Chisora

This one had it all. Filled with controversy from the start these two Heavyweights threw everything but the kitchen sink. A table was thrown though. At a press conference. Which, as a result meant the British title wasn’t on the line. But after all the talk, the bad mouthing and the attempted scrapping Whyte (20-1) and Chisora (26-7) done it properly in the ring and fought out a clean and action-packed-12-rounder. Both men were rocked and absorbed a lot of punishment, but Whyte’s superior stamina was just about enough to nick it for him on the judges’ scorecard by split decision.

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Keith Thurman vs Shawn Porter

Thurman (27-0) was getting in the ring with probably the best opponent he’s faced. The only man to previously have defeated Porter (26-2-1) was Kell Brook, but, in a fierce competitive fight, Thurman successfully defended his WBA World Welterweight title dishing out Porter’s second loss of his career with a 115-113 unanimous decision. Although the announcement was greeted by booing, the stats suggested Thurman deservedly had his hand raised at the end, landing 43.6% of his punches while his opponent made 35.6%.

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Andre Ward vs Sergey Kovalev

The fight that everyone scored differently. It was a fight we all wanted as soon as Ward made the jump up from Super-Middleweight. The defensive suave of Ward (31-0) met the aggressive power of ‘The Krusher’ (30-1-1) at the T-Mobile Arena, in Las Vegas. The American, fighting on home turf, was put down in the second round for only the second time in his illustrious career. But Ward, as Ward does, after falling behind on the cards managed to take the second half of the fight and claim Kovalev’s WBO, IBF and WBA Super World Light Heavyweight titles by unanimous decision.

After Capturing Light Heavyweight Titles, What is Next for Andre Ward?

Carl Frampton vs Leo Santa Cruz

After unifying his IBF super-bantamweight title by outpointing Scott Quigg, the Northern Irishmen capped off his impressive year by adding Leo Santa Cruz’s (32-1-1) WBA Super World Featherweight belt. ‘The Jackal’ (23-0) jumped up a weight division and battled it out with the Mexican champion in an absolute barn burner. After a hard and punishing 12 rounds it went to the judges’ scorecards and Frampton, was given the nod. Now, just for us, they’re doing it all again at the MGM Grand on the 28th January. Not a bad way to start the new year.

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Hosea Burton vs Frank Buglioni

Words were exchanged between the pair in what was a heated build up to this Light-Heavyweight contest for the British title. But when the fighting started it quickly turned in to a very watchable and enjoyable scrap. Both Burton (18-1) and Buglioni (19-2-1) continuously plowed forwards, in attempts to assert their dominance. They were both taking serious damage and in the twelfth-round Burton’s chickens came home to roost. The 28-year-old was slowing down and deserved to hear the final bell but with just one minute left in the bout Buglioni landed some hurtful blows and the ref waved it off.

Thomas Williams Jr. vs Edwin Rodriguez

A fiery, hard fought contest… while it lasted. At the StubHub Center, on the undercard of Andre Berto’s knockout win against Victor Ortiz, Rodriguez, (28-2) displayed courage, grit, determination, and, a chin. In this two-rounder, it was Williams Jr (20-2) who was landing the more powerful and hurtful shots but a number of times Rodriguez remained upright and proudly came firing back. In the end, it took a monster left hook to knock the resolute 31-year-old out.

Gennady Golovkin vs Kell Brook

As far as unexpected fights go, this one took the biscuit. You couldn’t have called it. This was not a fight many had in mind, but, when it was made it was all the talk. The IBF World Welterweight champion, Brook, jumped up two weight division to face the feared Middleweight kingpin at the O2 Arena. Looking in great shape and as confident as ever the Englishman made a great start to the fight. However, as the fight went on we began to realise Brook wouldn’t be making history as Golovkin’s power started to take its toll and Brook’s trainer, Dominic Ingle threw in the towel stopping proceedings in the fifth round.

Anthony Crolla vs Ismael Barroso

After prizing away the WBA World Lightweight title from Darleys Perez in their second meeting, Crolla, (31-5-3)made his first defence against the man who, effectively, sent world title challenger Kevin Mitchell into retirement. As expected, the Venezuelan (19-1-2) started strong and, typical of a Joe Gallagher fighter, Crolla did not. He absorbed some early punishment and probably lost the first five rounds. It became clear after six though, that Crolla’s tactics were spot on, as the challenger noticeably began to tire. He had thrown all he had and was on empty, Crolla seized his chance and overwhelmed his opponent, eventually stopping him in the seventh.

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A Look At Salido-Miura


A Look At Salido-Miura
By: Brandon Bernica

​This past week, a knuckle-loaded slugfest between veterans Orlando Salido and Takashi Miura was finalized for December 17th. Instantly, the boxing world rejoiced at the pairing, familiar with the intensity with which each man fights with.

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​Salido (43-13-4), the grizzled veteran from Mexico, had made a name for himself for being in all-action fights. His mixed draw with Francisco Vargas this year was considered the fight of this year by many ringside observers. The former two-division champion also holds longstanding rivalries with Juan Manuel Lopez and Roman Martinez, engaging in crowd-pleasing affairs with each man.

​Salido’s biggest win came against one of the greatest amateurs of all-time, Vasyl Lomachenko, in a controversial bout. In Lomachenko’s second pro outing, Salido edged the fight on the cards despite weighing in overweight and firing a string of low blows.

​Meanwhile Miura (30-3-2) shares a common opponent with Salido in Vargas. Miura led much of that fight until Vargas turned the tables and knocked him out in an entertaining finish. Wins over Gamaliel Diaz, Billy Dib, and Sergio Thompson punctuate the Japanese fighter’s solid career. His only other loss came at the hands of his native rival Takashi Uchiyama in Japan.

​Salido-Miura promises nothing but non-stop action. Both fighters thrive on wearing their opponents out in grueling wars of attrition. The caveat here is that each man has also shown vulnerability in past fights. Both men are open to be hit and have been knocked out in the past. You can all but guarantee the fight will either be a long, taxing battle or a quick, explosive fight.

​One angle of the promotion I would love to see uncovered is the budding rivalry between Japan and Mexico. Both countries sport fighting cultures that celebrate fighting with guts and gusto, pressing forward until your opponent calls mercy. With classic fights between the two countries in recent years such as Arakawa-Figueroa, Kamegai-Soto Karass and Miura-Vargas, the evidence begs the question: why don’t we explore this rivalry more? Clearly, it works, and it can expose U.S. fans to a rich boxing scene in Japan that often flies under the radar.

​2016 has been rough for boxing, to say the least. Fighters continue to rot in the throes of inactivity, pining for an opportunity to advance their careers. Just as we’re about to lose all the hope attached to our boxing fandom, we get fights like this one that restore our faith in the sport. We recall those earliest of fights in our memories that drew us to the action in the ring, a grotesque display of fisticuffs that, for some reason, we can’t take our eyes off of. If Salido-Miura fails to meet our expectations, boxing in 2016 will end much like how it played out throughout the year: disappointingly.

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What’s next for Vasyl Lomachenko?


What’s next for Vasyl Lomachenko?
By: Jordan Seward

Vasyl Lomachenko created history last Saturday in Madison Square Garden by becoming a two-weight world champion in just his seventh professional fight.

The Ukrainian, who had an illustrious amateur career before he turned pro, delivered a brutal fifth-round knockout of Rocky Martinez to strip away and claim his WBO super-featherweight belt.

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Lomachenko (6-1) has now won world titles at featherweight and super-featherweight. The Ukrainian gold medallist won his first world title when he handed Gary Russell Jr (27-1) his first and only career defeat, with a majority decision victory to claim the vacant WBO world featherweight title. Although this was his second bite at the cherry.

Orlando Salido (43-13-4) was due to make his first defence of the WBO world featherweight belt against Lomachenko in the Ukrainian’s second professional fight but Salido came in over weight and was subsequently stripped of the belt. The much bigger Salido slugged his way to a split decision victory and is the only blemish on Lomachenko’s professional record to date.

The transition from amateur boxing to professional boxing can be a difficult one, but the Ukrainian was undoubtedly ready to make the leap way before he actually did. Before turning pro, the double Olympic champion achieved just about everything that can be as an amateur and boasts an incredible record of (396-1), the only loss coming to Albert Selimov. This sort of amateur pedigree stands a fighter in very good stead to progress on to the professional ranks and Lomachenko is testament to that.

Lomachenko nurtured in the amateur ranks and bought over his speed, skill and power to the professional game seamlessly, it was there for all to see, but questions hung over his head after the defeat to Salido. Many suggested he wasn’t ready to fight at world level and needed more time as a professional before fighting for a world title. How wrong they were. If it wasn’t for Salido coming in over the 126lb limit the story could’ve been different. Not that it mattered as he claimed the very same belt a fight later and hit back at his critics by beating a 24-fight veteran in Gary Russell Jr and winning a world title in just his third professional fight.

And now, at just 28-years-old and seven fights in, it seems Lomachenko is destined to replicate the success he had in the amateurs in the professional game. The Ukrainian is already unquestionably one of the biggest rising stars of modern boxing and has proved he is the real deal in the professional ranks. The only thing left to ponder, is who’s up next for Lomachenko?

It all depends on what weight division he wants to operate in, there’s huge fights out there for him at featherweight and super-featherweight. A unification fight with the IBF world super-featherweight champion Jose Pedraza (22-0) makes sense and would certainly appeal to an American audience. Guillermo Rigondeaux (16-0) is a name being bandied about as he returns to the ring after eight months out against James Dickens (22-1) on the 16th July.

The Cuban shares two Olympic gold medals with Lomachenko and has stated in the past he would fight the Ukrainian at 126lbs. It would be interesting to see who would come out on top of this super fight with the speed and power of Lomachenko and the defensive control and swagger of Rigondeaux.

Even a fight at lightweight is a possibility. Dejan Zlaticanin (22-0) has fought in America in his last two fights and has just won the WBC world lightweight title and could be a potential next opponent for the skilful Lomachenko. If he hasn’t already cemented his position among the world’s top pound for pound fighters, becoming a three-weight world champion in just eight fights surely would.

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HBO Boxing Results: Lopez wins Controversial Decision; Salido and Vargas fight to Majority Draw


HBO Boxing Results: Lopez wins Controversial Decision; Salido and Vargas fight to Majority Draw
By: Matthew N. Becher

In the wake of the death of the Great Muhammad Ali, HBO aired a boxing card which proved to be the best way to pay tribute to the former Heavyweight champion of the world. Live from Carson, California at the StubHub Center a pair of fights in the Featherweight division, one between two rising prospects and the other between two champion veterans was held.

Between the undercard and main event HBO presented a very nice tribute to Muhammad Ali. The StubHub Center was lit up in cell phone cameras, while chants of “Ali, Ali, Ali” rang out. Michael Buffer led the tribute with a great speech as they tolled the traditional 10 count.

March 31, 2016, Los Angeles , Ca.  ---  Former 3-time world champion Orlando Salido (R) and WBC Super Featherweight world champion Francisco Vargas(L) at the ESPN studios to talk about their upcoming HBO 12-round title fight, Saturday, June 4, at the StubHub Center in Carson Ca.  --- Photo Credit : Chris Farina - Team Salido  -  copyright 2016
Photo Credit: Chris Farina- Team Salido

Abraham Lopez (20-0-1 15KO) v. Julian Ramirez (16-0 8KO): Featherweight

The fight started out extremely fast, with hard punches from both fighters. Ramirez was on the balls of his feet, bouncing around, while his counterpart Lopez began landing heavy accurate punches. Ramirez was more of the sharp shooter, efficiently landing a strong, straight left hand.

The second and third rounds provided the same quick pace action, with both fighters going toe to toe, landing heavy shots, to the surprise of Lopez, who most likely thought Ramirez as a non-contact boxer.

During the middle rounds the pace slowed down tremendously, and went from a brawl to a boxing match, which is exactly what Julian Ramirez was hoping for. Both fighters suffered cuts on accidental head butts, due to the southpaw and orthodox styles.

Ramirez proved that he could brawl when need be, but could more than out box the undefeated brawler in Lopez. Even though Ramirez was bothered by the flowing cut on his right eye, which he constantly pawed at, he was none the less able to stick to his game plan, landing more than 50% of his power punches. Ramirez has put himself in the position to take on someone that he believes to be the best fighter in the sport and test his own worth in Guillermo Rigondeaux.

The judges did see it differently and all saw the winner of the fight in Abraham Lopez. This was very much a controversial decision, as Lopez look battered, bruised and tired at the end of the fight.
Lopez UD10 97-92(2x), 98-92

Francisco Vargas (23-0-1 17KO) v. Orlando Salido (43-13-3 30KO): WBC Featherweight title:

What was billed initially as a “Fight of the Year” candidate on paper did not disappoint in its advertisement. Both fighters delivered on action, ditching any kind of defense very early in the first round and beginning to just brawl as soon as they could.

Trading shots, and toe to toe fighting was the norm of the fight. Vargas attempted to use his boxing skill, but was eventually made to fight inside the phone booth as the veteran Salido never stopped coming forward, both men throwing every shot with bad intentions, looking to stop their opponent.

The sixth round was the closest to a knockdown for Vargas, wobbling Salido and nearly sending him to the canvas. Vargas tried to put his opponent down, but ended up punching himself out, giving Salido a way to make a comeback.

The last third of the fight was just as brutal as the first half with both men in- fighting, landing blistering shots to the others head and body. These are the fights that people talk about for years, and take years off of a fighters lives. This style of fight is what separate fighters, that puts fear in to other fighters hearts.

It could have gone either way. Both men left their souls in that ring, entertaining the fans and leaving it all on the line. Fight of the year candidate? That is the least we could give these two warriors.
115-113 Vargas, 114-114 (2x) Majority Draw

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HBO World Championship Boxing: Vargas vs. Salido Preview


HBO World Championship Boxing: Vargas vs. Salido Preview
By: Matthew N. Becher

This Saturday night from the StubHub center in Carson, California, Golden Boy Promotions will telecast a possible fight of the year candidate live on HBO. The undercard will pit two young, undefeated prospects in the featherweight division who have been showcased on smaller Golden Boy cards, and will look to use this opportunity to expose themselves to a very large audience and possibly set themselves up for bigger fights in the upcoming year.

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Julian Ramirez (16-0 8KO) vs. Abraham Lopez (20-0-1 15KO): Featherweight

Julian “El Camaron” Ramirez is a fresh faced, 23 year old slick boxer out of Los Angeles, California. Ramirez is the nephew of former world champion Genaro Hernandez. Ramirez comes from a very good amateur background, compiling a record of 73-5 and going on to become a four time National PAL champion. He has won his last three meetings, over Raul Hidalgo, Hugo Partida and Christopher Martin, by Unanimous decision, slowly stepping up the quality of opponent. Ramirez is a fast handed southpaw who is very much looking to get to that next level of opposition.
Abraham “Chamaco” Lopez is also a young fighter looking to take advantage of the exposure he will receive on this undercard. Though a little older than his opponent, the 28 year old Lopez has also stayed very busy in the last year, winning all of his fights by stoppage. His lone draw on his record came last year against a much more experience fighter in Juan Carlos Martinez, who has been in the ring with the likes of Antonio DeMarco, Juan Carlos Burgos, Bernabe Concepcion and Mikey Garcia. Lopez is a brawler and will look to use his power to win this fight.

Francisco Vargas (23-0-1 17KO) vs. Orlando Salido (43-13-3 30KO): WBC Featherweight championship

Both fighters in this main event are come forward, punch for punch, warriors in the ring. They exemplify the “Mexican Style” of boxing that is one of the most entertaining styles of fighting the sport has to offer. Vargas is coming off of an unbelievable performance last November, in a fight that went on to win the BWAA fight of the year award, against Takashi Miura. Not only did Vargas get off the canvas and work through an awful cut on his eye, he was able to knock out Miura, who seemed unstoppable.
Vargas and Salido are similar in their fighting styles, which can at time resemble fighting in a phone booth, but they come from different backgrounds. The 31 year old champion, Vargas, was a highly decorated amateur who represented his native Mexico in the 2008 summer Olympics in China. Salido, who is only four years older at 35, has been a pro since he was 15 years old. This will be his 60th professional fight, and he has seen it all. Where Vargas does have some big wins against Miura and Juan Manuel Lopez, which is really the extent of his accomplishes as a professional. Salido, who has been pro since 1996 has been in the ring with the likes of Juan Manuel Marquez, Robert Guerrero, Yuriorkis Gamboa, Juan Manuel Lopez, Mikey Garcia, Vasyl Lomachenko and Roman Martinez.

When they say styles make fights, this is the type of fight they are referring to. On paper, fireworks are already starting to go off, and both of these men do not want to leave anything back once the final bell is rung. We expect the fight to live up to the hype and commend both fighters for putting aside any legal, contractual or ego garbage aside and get ready to fight.

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Boxing Insider Interview with Orlando Salido: “I do see this fight ending with a knockout!”


Orlando Salido Interview: “Because of our styles, I do see this fight ending with a knockout”
By: Matthew N. Becher

Orlando Salido is a former, multi divisional world champion who became a professional boxer in 1996, at the age of 15. He fought 6 times in 1996, his debut year, against grown men, and has never looked back. At the age of 35 he has been in the ring with the likes of Juan Manuel Marquez, Robert Guerrero, Juan Manuel Lopez, Mikey Garcia, Vasyl Lomachenko and Roman Martinez.

On June 4th, in his 60th professional fight, he will look to once again become a world champion, as he takes on undefeated Francisco Vargas at the StubHub Center in Carson, California. Earlier this week we were able to speak with Orlando and talk to him about his career and upcoming title fight.

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Boxing Insider: This will be your 60th professional fight, 20 years pro. How much longer do you plan on fighting?

Orlando Salido: I feel great, mentally, physically. I know what I need to do every fight to get ready. It’s always a question of how you “look”, how you “feel” after a fight. I know this is an important fight and we’ll see what happens in this fight, then I can see what happens next.

Boxing Insider: With a fighter like Francisco Vargas, does this have to be an all-out “brawl” or could this be a fight that goes the distance?

Orlando Salido: Because of our styles, I do see this fight ending with a knockout, but in Boxing you never know. You may think you are going against a certain style and then guys don’t fight like they always fight. People change in the ring. I think it will be a very good fight, either way.

Boxing Insider: About a month ago, Vargas tested positive for a banned substance. What do you think about fighters that test positive?

Orlando Salido: I know someone on his team must have made a mistake with that. I’m not even thinking about it. I’m focusing on my fight, and what I need to do to win. It’s going to be a tough fight, a hard fight, and that is all I am thinking about. That is all I care about, getting ready for the fight.

Boxing Insider: Was there any reason why you did not decide to cancel this fight?

Orlando Salido: No, the way I see it, I do not know what benefits him or what helps with the drug he supposedly took. That’s what you have to live with. We had the opportunity here. An opportunity to fight for a world championship, an opportunity to fight for a title I always wanted. I’m ready to go.

Boxing Insider: You have 13 losses in your career, but have gone from a stepping stone fight to a multi division world champion. What do you say to the fans that are infatuated with the “zero” loss mentality?

Orlando Salido: I never been a fighter that goes in thinking of defeat. I always go in thinking about winning. I prepare myself to win every time I step in the ring and to give the fans what they want. The results, sometimes don’t matter to me. But as long as the fans are entertained with a good fight and enjoy watching me fight, that’s all I can do. Just doing the best I can and have the results be what they are.

Boxing Insider: Out of all the great fighters you have taken on in your career, who would you say was “the best I’ve ever faced”?

Orlando Salido: I would have to say Juan Manuel Marquez. He was a great counter puncher, great technician in the ring. He wouldn’t let me do anything. He was always a step ahead of me, whenever I thought of doing something he already knew what I was trying to do. That was, without a doubt the best I have ever fought.

Boxing Insider: Do you want the winner of June 11th’s fight between Rocky Martinez and Vasyl Lomachenko?
Orlando Salido: If I do come out a winner against Vargas, I would love to rematch Lomachenko who has said he wanted another fight against me. As long as they pay me the money that it is worth.

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Performance Enhancing Drugs and Boxing


Performance Enhancing Drugs and Boxing
By: Matthew N. Becher

Performance enhancing drugs have been a problem in the sports world for a while now, but when it comes to the sport of boxing, it takes on a whole new level. In the end, if an athlete is taking a banned substance and hits a few more home runs or rides a bicycle faster than their opponent it is sad that an individual felt they needed to cheat, but in boxing the outcome could mean life or death. A fighter is already putting their life on the line when entering the ring, with the added incentive of a steroid being used by your opponent, the outcome could be catastrophic. In the past few months at least 3 major fighters have tested positive for banned substances. All have had different outcomes with their appeals and fights. Why does boxing not have an overall rule and punishment on the use of these drugs?

Cedric Boswell, Alexander Povetkin

In March of this Year, Lucas Browne of Australia defeated Ruslan Chagaev in a Heavyweight fight that took place in Grozny, Russia. Browne won by 10th round knockout and later tested positive for the banned substance Clenbuterol, which is used to boost metabolism and lose weight. Browne, claimed he was drugged while in Russia, unknowingly. Browne did get drug tested prior to the fight, in his native Australia, and came up clean. This week his “B” samples came back positive as well, and the result of his fight will be overturned to a No Contest. He has also been stripped of his WBA “regular” heavyweight championship title and will be suspended by the WBA for six months (this really means nothing, since he can fight under any other sanctioning body and anywhere in the world, since Boxing does not have one almighty governing regulatory system).

Francisco Vargas is the undefeated WBC Super Featherweight champion of the world, and is currently getting ready for his highly anticipated showdown with fellow brawling Mexican Orlando Salido. In late April, Vargas, also tested positive for Clenbuterol. He tested positive while both fighters were under the VADA program (Voluntary Anti-Doping Agency), and Vargas claims that he is innocent. His excuse was that he must have gotten the drug in his system while eating contaminated meat in his native Mexico (an excuse that fellow Mexican fighter Erik Morales used in 2012.) Wildly enough, the fight is still scheduled to go on as planned. Salido did not question the result, and does not see it as being a problem. Since the California state commission did not perform the test, instead being tested by another party, in VADA, the commission cannot rule in Vargas’ fate. The fight will go on as planned, and we will see what happens after June 4th.

Finally, the fight for the WBC heavyweight championship of the world, which was to take place in Moscow, Russia between the champion Deontay Wilder and Alexander Povetkin has been cancelled. Povetkin has tested positive for the steroid Meldonium. Wilder was weary of going to Russia only for the fear of being drugged, as Lucas Browne has claimed, but instead it was the Russian who came up positive in his own Country. The WBC has not banned Povetkin, who denies knowingly taking the substance, and will start its own investigation into the matter.

The differences here are all similar with small changes. Browne did not test positive until after the fight. He was paid in full, won and went home. After the fact, his victory was overturned, he was stripped of his “regular” title and banned by the WBA (again, he can still fight, just not under any WBA sanctioned events). Vargas and Salido are still going to fight. The fact is, if a fighter does not fight, he does not get paid, which leaves the innocent Salido in a predicament. He has put in the work, hired the trainers and members of his team. If he does not fight Vargas, even though Vargas came up positive for a steroid, neither man will get paid, and that’s a lot of time and money to lose out on. Wilder, the heavyweight champion, seemed to make the easy decision and leave. For him, the money did not matter, since his wellbeing would be at an even greater risk, fighting a professional heavyweight in their own backyard. Wilder will not receive his multimillion dollar payday, but it will not be hard to find another fight to take this one’s place.

On another note, late last year, during the Klitschko vs. Fury heavyweight championship fight that took place in Germany, Fury refused to drink or eat anything until he was out of the country entirely. Germany is Klitschko’s second home and Fury was very fearful of any of his post-fight meals or drinks to be contaminated and being wrongfully accused of cheating and his upset victory being overturned. People saw Fury as being a bit of a “wacko” for even thinking that, but now looking back at the Lucas Browne story, Fury might have been really onto something.

In the end, penalties have to be put in place universally for fighters that test positive for banned substances. Too much is at risk for steroids in this sport. Not only should boxers have to serve lengthy suspensions and fines that will deter anyone else from taking the chance of using these drugs, but the fighters on the other end who did absolutely nothing wrong should be able to get compensation for the monetary losses that they endure. Remember this isn’t a man trying to run or swim faster than another man. This is boxing, where any punch can end your life. It’s not a joking matter when it comes to steroids in the sport.

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