What was supposed to be the biggest boxing match of 2018 has been called off. Canelo Alvarez announced today that he would be pulling out of his May 5 re-match with Gennady Golovkin.
It was inevitable, of course–the shoe that has been hanging in the air for weeks now, waiting to drop. In February Alvarez tested positive for “trace amounts” of the prohibited substance clenbuterol. Alvarez and his team have professed innocence ever sense, blaming tainted Mexican meat for the contamination.
The excuse was never remotely credible. According to Team Canelo, tainted meat has been an issue in Mexico for a number of years now–previous athletes have similarly been caught in Mexico and this is not the first time we have heard the “tainted meat” defense.
But even if it is true, it is not excuse. In today’s sports world, athletes have to be more circumspect than ever about what they put in their bodies. If there was a risk that meat produced in Mexico might cause a positive PED, Alvarez should not have put a single bit of it in his mouth. We are talking about a multi-millionaire preparing to earn millions more. He can afford to bring in whatever food he wants.
This was not the result that anybody wanted. The WBC, ever corrupt, propped up a Doctor last month who asserted that the “trace amounts” of clenbuterol found in Canelo’s test were consistent with contaminated meat.
Well. They were also consistent with an athlete who has not properly managed his gear cycle.
You can be certain that the Nevada State Athletic Commission did not want to call this fight off. The Vegas economy lives and dies with big fight weekends.
But in the end there was simply no way to give Alvarez a pass and maintain anything like a veneer of credibility. Canelo pulled out of this fight for the same reason that disgraced VIPs resign–the axe is going to fall either way.
According to his statements today, GGG still plans to fight come May 5. The opponent will have a month to prepare–short notice, but worthwhile for a fighter who has stayed in training and is hungry for a big break. I heard Demetrius Andrade interviewed over the weekend by Gerry Cooney and he sounded ready to take any opportunity he could get. Jermall Charlo and Daniel Jacobs both have fights scheduled for later this month, so I would think either would be willing to cancel that bout for a crack at Triple G.