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Abel Sanchez: Canelo needs to prove his innocence

Canelo Alvarez Gennady Golovkin

By Jim Dower: Trainer Abel Sanchez says it’s up to Saul Canelo Alvarez to prove his innocence when he meets with the Nevada State Athletic Commission on April 10 for him to answer their questions about why he failed 2 drug tests in February for clenbuterol while preparing for his rematch with unbeaten IBF/IBO/WBA/WBC middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin for their May 5th rematch.

Sanchez says he doesn’t feel bad that he and Golovkin have been putting pressure on Canelo about his positive tests for clenbuterol. Sanchez says Golovkin was frustrated that nothing was being done about Canelo after his tests. Golovkin and Sanchez still want to face Canelo on May 5th, but they’re willing to go in the opposite direction if the Nevada Commission gives Canelo a longer suspension on April 10. Canelo is serving a short temporary suspension of 2 ½ weeks right now.

The Commission hasn’t said Canelo is guilty. The temporary suspension is what the Commission sometimes does while they’re investigating a case. The Commission could clear Canelo on April 10 to fight Golovkin. It will depend on whether Canelo has enough information to present to the Nevada Commission to clear him. His excuse for the positive tests is he ate contaminated meat, so he’ll need to verify that information with the Commission to be cleared.

“April 10 is the hearing, so I have to assume we’re going to fight,” Abel Sanchez said to Villian Fy about Canelo’s hearing with the Nevada State Athletic Commission on the 10th of April for them to discuss his 2 failed tests for clenbuterol. “We’re in training camp right now. We’ve got to train adequately for the moment. On the 10th, if they decide what happens, then we’ll go in whatever direction they decide. I want Golovkin to fight on the 5th. I hope it’s Canelo. I’m glad we pushed it to this point. If he’s guilty, he’s guilty. If he’s not, then he has to prove it then. I’m not sorry we’re talking about it, because he did something illegal. If it had been Golovkin, this fight would have been canceled. Also, if he or his people are hurt because he’s being pushed, he did something wrong. Prove that you’re not guilty. For May 5th, we’re hoping it’s Canelo,” Sanchez said.

A suspension for Canelo will hurt Golovkin, because he won’t be able to face Canelo and show the boxing world that he’s the better fighter. Some fans think Canelo did enough to deserve a win over GGG, Other fans were fine with the 12 round draw that the Nevada Commission assigned judges scored the fight. A suspension for Canelo will force Golovkin to wait until 2019 before he gets a rematch against him unless he receives a short suspension. Golovkin will be 36 next month, and it doesn’t play into his hands for him to be waiting a year or more before he faces Canelo a second time. Golovkin needs to have that fight with Canelo happen while he’s still relatively young. The longer the fight is put off into th future, the better it is for Canelo.

“What he’s frustrated about is nothing is being done,” Sanchez said about Golovkin. “We’re at the point now where April the 10th will decide, and it’s not up to us in the Golovkin team. It’s up to the Commission. If the Commission says it’s OK, then you know what? It’s OK. That’s why they’re the experts. VADA and the Commission are supposed to be there to protect all the fighters, not just Golovkin, but all the fighters,” Sanchez said.
It’s going to be a major blow to Las Vegas if the Nevada Commission suspends Canelo, because there are a lot of boxing fans that were going to be traveling to that city for the mega-fight between those two stars. While the Canelo-GGG 2 fight will still likely take place later if Canelo is suspended, it won’t be soon. With Canelo, you just don’t know what he’ll do. If he gets upset at the Nevada Commission for giving him a suspension, then he can always take his fights elsewhere to Texas. I think that would be a self-defeating move on Canelo’s part through, as he makes good money fighting in Las Vegas. If the Nevada Commission suspends Canelo, they’ll have a good reason for doing so. If Canelo tests negatively in the future, he’ll not have problems. This was the first time in Canelo’s boxing career that he ever tested positive for a drug, and he’s been a pro for 13 years. Canelo’s career is likely more than halfway over, so he’s done well.

Top Rank promoter Bob Arum thinks Canelo should be suspended for an extended period if it’s discovered during the Nevada Commission’s investigation that he intentionally used clenbuterol to improve his performance.

“I think the Nevada Commission needs to really investigate [Canelo Alvarez], and if the drugs were taken in order to bulk him up, they’ve got to suspend him and they’ve got to suspend him for a long period,” promoter Bob Arum said to TMZ about Canelo’s positive tests for clenbuterol. “If it was inadvertent from the meat, then give him a pass. That’s like the dog ate my homework. It’s very serious when athletes take drugs. Let’s see what happens. I’m sure the Nevada Commission will have a thorough investigation,” Arum said.

It’s going to be hard for the Nevada Commission to find guilt with Canelo, because his clenbuterol levels are low and he could have the information for them to where he purchased the contaminated meat. We’ll find out about that soon on April 10 when the Commission meets to decide Canelo’s case.

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