BORGES ON BERTO Berto's Penalty For PED Use? A Summer Off
|Written by Ron Borges|
|Friday, 31 August 2012 10:05|
That, more than anything else, seemed like the proper way to look at the California State Athletic Commission’s recent decision to license former welterweight champion Andre Berto only 2 ½ months after he tested positive for the performance enhancing drug norandrosterone, a result that came from his own insistence on random drug testing before a scheduled rematch with Victor Ortiz.
Those events not only called into question what Berto has been up to but also either his sanity or his intellect. Here’s a guy who accused Ortiz of using PEDs after Ortiz dethroned him by twice getting off the mat to drop Berto twice… and then he comes up dirty himself?
That positive test led to the cancelling of the rematch and soon after to Ortiz being knocked silly by Josesito Lopez in a stunning upset. Yet that outcome wasn’t half as stunning as the disgraceful decision by the CSAC to re-license Berto only months after he lost his license in Nevada.
What, in the end, was Berto’s penalty for being found guilty of having PEDs in his system? The summer off, that’s what.
That’s boxing. It’s also why it is today looked down upon by the general sporting public. One understands boxing is the black-eye business but why so often does it have to administer them to itself?
"As someone who truly believes in clean sport, I have never used any type of performance-enhancing drugs," Berto said in a statement after his licensing was announced. "Everything I've achieved was the result of hard work and determination.’’
Dr. Margaret Goodman and others who believe the use of PEDs in boxing is becoming an epidemic that is also a health hazard both for the user and for his opponent could not be blamed if they simply threw up their hands and walked away. What the CSAC ruling made clear is that PED testing in boxing is a joke and will remain so until someone is severely injured by an opponent who tests positive and the state is sued for millions for failing to protect the guy from assault with a dangerous weapon – in this case a syringe.
Berto’s positive test resulted from a random urine test conducted by Goodman’s Las Vegas-based Voluntary Anti-Doping Association. VADA was overseeing drug testing because that’s what Berto and Ortiz agreed to before their September rematch. Berto (28-1, 22 KOs) submitted to a random urine test on May 2 and both his "A" and "B" samples came back positive. When the fight was cancelled Berto insisted the positive test was the result of some contaminated nutritional substance he was taking and not the use of PEDs, a familiar excuse that ranks up there with contaminated B-12 shots and my dog ate my homework.
Never have so many guys happened to stumble across contamination since the Russians had to clean up Chernobyl. That’s the claim over and over again from every professional athlete who comes up dirty regardless of the sport or the PED found to have mysteriously wormed its way into his or her system without notice.