By Jake Donovan
Further details are being released in the ongoing drug testing saga surrounding Lamont Peterson’s 8th round knockout win over Kendall Holt last month in Washington D.C. This time around, it’s good news for the previously accused party.
Several sources have confirmed that Peterson tested negative for any banned substances following his February 22 performance, marking his first fight in 14 months. The news means he now gets to return to the ring on May 18 as planned for his titanic showdown with fellow beltholder Lucas Matthysse.
“I can confirm that one fighter provided an atypical test result as it pertains to the Peterson-Holt post fight drug test following their championship fight,” Andre Johnson, Peterson’s press agent, stated Thursday afternoon to Boxingscene.com. “Both camps have the chain of command and test results. Both test results are identified with each fighter’s names attached.
“Lamont’s test results were all negative across the board.”
The news was confirmed in passing by representatives from the IBF, who declined to offer further details until it was prepared to release an official statement.
Previous reports indicated that test samples from “a male boxer” provided “atypical findings” of a banned substance, which turned out to be hCG, a fertility drug that also produces testosterone but in more popular form is used as a weight-loss supplement.
The latter product is banned by the FDA, labeling the diet product as fraudulent and illegal to be used in the United States as an over-the-counter product.
Nobody has specifically named Holt (28-6, 16KO) as the fighter who tested positive – in part due to the fact that a positive result was never entirely specified.
That the lab report stated an atypical finding means that there was enough to exceed the allowable amount, but also not enough to present the offending party with a significant advantage.
Holt has taken to social media to deny any such claims, as he – along with most of the boxing public – was under the assumption that it was Peterson who tested positive. The accusation stemmed from an online report from another publication who has since retracted its story, but also comes in part due to Peterson’s recent past.
The fight with Holt was the first time Peterson (31-1-1, 16KO) saw ring action since his Dec. ’11 upset split decision win over Amir Khan. A rematch was planned for last May, only for Peterson to get popped by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Agency (VADA) for traces of synthetic testosterone during random pre-fight drug testing.
The findings resulted in the rematch being canceled, but also led to the revelation that Peterson began such medical treatments in Oct. ’11, two months prior to the Khan fight. Drug testing conducted following the fight produced negative results for both fighters, but the VADA findings prompted the WBA to strip Peterson of one of the two belts he acquired that evening.
Peterson was permitted to keep his IBF title, despite having to sit on the sidelines for all of 2012.
Fans and uninformed media speculated aloud of possible repercussions had Peterson been the one identified as the fighter who tested positive. Now that his name is cleared, it’s on to future business.
The drug controversy was created by Holt’s camp after leaking out news of a weeks-long discussion with the D.C Boxing and Wrestling Commission to obtain test results. The commission cited confidentially laws disallowing such information to be forwarded, prompting Holt to sign a consent form on March 22 to allow his records to be released.
Such consent was also granted by Peterson on Wednesday, after which the D.C. commission forwarded the results to all parties. However, such results were not specifically labeled with either fighter’s names.
Peterson and his camp never expressed concern, largely due to previous verbal and e-mailed assurance that both fighters tested negative. Such communication wasn't sufficient for Holt or the IBF, both of whom insisted upon receiving the results for both fighters.
"We are fine with the representation of the D.C. Commission's verbal statement, but we prefer to see the test results," IBF President Daryl Peoples stated to Boxingscene.com on the subject earlier in the week. "It's standard procedure for our organization to receive such results."
Peterson’s handlers were content with the information provided, both in previous form and in most recent format. Whether or not his opponent tested positive wasn't of their concern.
“The commission called us and informed that the results were negative. We didn’t ask about Kendall. We were only worried about Lamont,” notes Johnson. “We’re looking forward to moving on towards who he next fights."
Peterson is currently in training for a planned May 18 showdown with Lucas Matthysse in Atlantic City. Ironically, the date marks exactly 52 weeks following the planned May 19, 2012 date for Peterson’s eventually canceled rematch with Khan.
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board, Yahoo Boxing Ratings Panel and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: