Tarver Tests Positive For PED, Claims False Positive; Plus, Shaw's Response

TarverLakode Hogan 5Another week, another boxing star tests positive for a PED. At this time, we've gotten to a frightening point where skeptical eyes are focused on every top-level hitter in the game, after former light heavyweight champion Antonio Tarver tested positive for the steroid drostanolone, from a sample taken before his June 2 fight against Lateef Kayode, in California.

Gabriel Montoya of Maxboxing Tweeted the revelation that Tarver, who fought Kayode to a draw, and just a couple days ago was going back and forth on Twitter followers about the Julio Cesar Chavez testing snafu in Texas, tested positive. ESPN's Dan Rafael talked to George Dodd, the executive director of the Cali commission, and Dodd confirmed Tarver's positive. He said that Tarver would be suspended and fined, an amount to me that seems a pittance, $2,500.

The fighter took to Twitter after 9 PM Friday night. “Today's news of a false positive caught me as well as my family and supporters by surprise, I apologize for the embarrassment it caused. I'll appeal and submit to the California Commission everything that I've consume prior to June 2 that could of caused this honest mistake.”

The substance Cali says was in his urine is used by some to counter side effects of steroids, such as bloating and water retention.

Tarver's situation comes on the heels of Lamont Peterson and Andre Berto also testing positive. All eyes will be on the Showtime broadcast of Saturday's Victor Ortiz-Josesito Lopez scrap, as Tarver is slated to work the card as an analyst.

The fighter, age 43, boasts a 29-6-1 mark after the draw with Kayode, though you can expect the draw to be ruled a No Contest. He is best known for a shocker KO win over Roy Jones in 2004, and as of late has been campaigning at cruiser, while promising to get a title shot after heavyweight, after flirting some with that division. The wave of PED positives, while a shock and a buzzkill, could be seen as a positive, if the athletes and powers that be in the sport work to get everyone on an even playing field. It is a shame because fight fans now can't help it but look at the accomplishments of everyone with a jaundiced eye.


June 22, 2012 – Promoter Gary Shaw is concerned about the damage done in the sport of boxing after the news Friday that Antonio Tarver tested positive for a banned substance in a pre-fight drug test conducted by the California State Athletic Commission before his fight with Lateef Kayode.

“It's very worrisome where our sport is heading these days with the recent array of fighters testing positive for banned substances,” Shaw said. “With all these fights being canceled its killing the sport and I hope the networks are not going to lose interest. As promoters, we do our best to make sure everyone is abiding by the rules. I'm happy that the commissions are stepping up their stance on catching fighters cheating because the safety of the fighter should always come first.

“It's unfortunate that in Lateef Kayode's first major opportunity, he had to fight on what appears to be an unlevel playing field.I have a lot of respect for Antonio Tarver and would be very disappointed to find out that he knowingly took performance enhancing drugs. It is my hope that Tarver requests that the B sample will be tested and will show that Tarver was clean. However if the sample comes back dirty, then the commission should take appropriate action. It was a very close fight as it was ruled a split draw, but now that we have been informed by the California State Athletic Commission about the alleged drug use,I'll have to talk to Lateef and his management team to see what we'll do to resolve this matter.

“In addition, the horrible scoring by the judges, the excessive use of PED's, and the inability of promoters working together, is only going to kill this sport,'' Shaw continued. “Something needs to be done and major changes need to be made, and the time is now. The boxing business is getting worse by the day and we are losing fans by the minute. Boxing has been around longer than any other sport and we must keep the integrity of the game pure. I implore the commissions around the United States to take severe action against any fighter who doesn't abide by the commissions' standards. We need a strict drug testing policy to rid the sport of those that don't want to play by the rules, and we need more competent judges.”

Comment on this article


-SouthPaul :

I'm trying to give Tarver the benefit of the doubt just the same as the other recent dirty fighters. There's so much product on the shelves today and who knows what it all contains unless you're a chemist with a laboratory. I was telling a boxing brethren last week I have a hard time even shopping for eeeefffffin' shampoo these days. You got one brand that makes a half million varieties. Caused a boxing brother stress; ended up in the Rogaine section due to losing my hair. LMAO. I told this same boxing friend it seems to have been forgotten that Manny Pacquiao has been testing negative for years now. He replied .. the commission tests are whack... can easily be fooled. Be that as it may I said but other fighters have been popped. CoughTarverCough. I recall Fernando Vargas being one of those other high profile subjects. That during the time he was all shredded up like he was a body builder. What I am alluding to here is; Manny's never been fully exempt from any and all testing. On the contrary. He's passed over and over yet the way some people approach that debate is you'd think he'd been running a complete muck on the boxing world. Comical.

-the Roast :

You got any excuses tonight Antonio? (I stole this line from somebody, too good to pass up!)

-brownsugar :

I never liked him anyway.

-deepwater :

you beat me to it roast. good one.

-deepwater :

what substance did old tarver take. a water pill ? this is getting outta hand.

-dino da vinci :

You got any excuses tonight Antonio? (I stole this line from somebody, too good to pass up!)
Clever quip, Mr Roast, quite clever indeed.

-SouthPaul :

Tarver's been taken off tonights broadcast.

-Radam G :

Wow! Holla!

-Radam G :

Bradley -- listed at 5-foot-6 -- is five-foot-four and seven-eights barefooted. His hat size is eight and a half. His shoe size is 12 and a half. This DUDE is on so much steriods that it is pathetic. And that is no Cali desert mirage. Nuff spit! Holla!

-SouthPaul :

Radam How the hell you know the brothas' shoe size!? LMAO

-amayseng :

disappointed to hear this of tarver, hope its a false positive. i met tarver once, about 6 years ago at the mall in tampa, we had a 5 minute conversation and he was very polite to me and my son. he conversed with me as if we have been friends for years, i always appreciated that, he was a down to earth guy. i like his commentary on showtime as well. reading up on drostanolone it seems as if this ped deceases estrogen.... @radam, tim bradley may very well be on peds, they mentioned numerous times he wears a size 12 and his head is a bit humungous, but i dont like to accuse a man of cheating if he hasnt been caught... btw, manny pac has never tested positive for anything, ever, and there are fighters getting busted all over the place lately...

-Radam G :

I've seen those BIG-A$$ feet a time or two, and straight-up asked da brotha. [Now in the amateurs, the teenager Tim wore a 10 to 10 and a half size shoe.] Before the Holt's, he told me an 11 and a half. Of course, I said: "D@MN! Yo' noggin and feet are getting a Goliath look -- or is dat da jolly, ebony giant." And thought to myself that "Tim is fibbing and his dogs are more like 12s." And with any explanation of "Tim is gonna fight Manny one day," I was later kicked out from being anywhere near to Tim and called a "Pacquiao spy." And the bytch Bradley Team has not been friendly with me to this day. And I'm not experiencing a Cali desert mirage. I won't tell you how, SouthPaul, but in Sin City, I got a sneak peep at TB's boxing shoes. And, in living color, his boxing boots were a size 12.5. Dude is having a very late head-and-foot growth in life, or he is shooting, juicing and rubbing. YOU KNO' DA DEAL! Holla!

-SouthPaul :

Lol, entertaining read. I'll swirl that info around my head. Most fighters I've encountered are always shorter than their Tale Of The Tape info. Met Andre Ward at the MAyweather vs Cotto card. He's a full fledged 168lber. David Haye walked past me at the Mandalay Bay pool... That cat looked all his tale of the tape and some. Don't hold me to tha to the fullest.. I was pretty lit up by then:rolleyes:

-jesster64 :

"Claims false positive". I hate seeing that. Tarver has always been a nice guy. Sorry to see he tested positive. Maybe he thought this is his last hurrah and he needed an edge. But amir khan is absolutely right when he said petersen could have killed him in the ring. Thats why I hate steroids. It gives a boxer too great an edge in a sport that can be deadly. I have to take another look at bradleys weigh in photos. His workouts seem super intense, but so are mayweathers and floyd looks more cut while bradley does look a bit bloated. Floyds hat size never changed, if bradley has barry bonds syndrome, I won't be shocked, but extremely disappointed.

-brownsugar :

Showtime didn't let Tarver announce last week,..Guess it's bad publicity for a major cable network who gets paid for airing competitive professional fights to allow a potential to cheater commentate on what's being presented as fair contests ,.... how could Tarver participate in the frequent conversations about PED users that announcers frequently like to have nowadays?...... that would be pretty awkward. it's was awkward enough listening to Roy Jones commentate last year just days or weeks after he had been knocked out.... and no one brought up the subject.

-SouthPaul :

Right, unless I missed it didn't hear a single word on the Tarver situation on the Showtime telecast. And truthfully, I was ok with that. I am all PED'ed out.

-undisputed34 :

not a big fan of tarver anyway...talked a bigger fight than he ever gave in the ring...including the one victory that made him...