Wilder fight in jeopardy with Povetkin testing positive for banned substance

There already was a question about everyone in the US being able to watch the upcoming Wilder-Povetkin fight, but now another question has arisen, and that’s around the actual fight occurring. 

ESPN is reporting that Alexander Povetkin (30-1, 22 KOs) has tested positive for the banned substance meldonium, putting the actual fight in question. The urine test was administered by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association in Las Vegas and released today. According to ESPN “Meldonium, the same drug for which tennis star Maria Sharapova recently tested positive, was approved to be added to the banned substance list by the World Anti-Doping Agency in September and the ban went into effect Jan. 1. Meldonium is used because it is said to increase blood flow and allow more oxygen to be carried to the muscles and, therefore, enhance stamina, a trait boxers would want in a long fight.”

The fight’s promoter, Lou DiBella, stated:

“We literally have received this in the last hour and have not even had a chance to discuss this with our team,” DiBella said. “We’re in the process of doing this right now. But it’s extremely upsetting and disappointing and while I am angry, I am certainly not shocked. We’ll make a more detailed statement and figure things out when we discuss this among ourselves and with the WBC. We haven’t had enough time to digest this. We’ll have more to say later.”

Wilder (36-0, 35 KOs) would lose the biggest payday of his career, $4,504,500. Povetkin stands to lose $1,930,500. In addition, 10% of the winning bid, $715,000, would go into escrow and be awarded to the winner of the fight.

More to come on this fight, scheduled for Saturday May 21st in Russia. 

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