Boxer Antonio Tarver Tests Positive for Anabolic Steroid Drostanolone

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Antonio “Magic Man” Tarver, who began his long professional boxing career shortly after winning the bronze medal at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, has recently tested positive for the anabolic steroid drostanolone. Bodybuilders and athletes may recognize drostanolone as the active steroid in Masteron.

The California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) suspended Tarver for one year and fined him $2,500 after he failed post-fight doping test on June 2, 2012. Tarver’s opponent was Lateef Kayode. The fight was originally recorded as a “draw” but has since been changed to “no-contest”.

Tarver has indicated that he plans on appealing the CSAC decision. He could argue that the steroid testing was flawed or simply request a reduced suspension or fine. Regardless of the outcome, Tarver gets to keep the $1.1 million purse from the Kayode fight (minus the $2,500 fine).

Tarver has maintained his innocence. He has referred to the positive drostanolone test result as a “false positive”.

“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,” wrote Tarver on Twitter.

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.
June 23, 2012 4:06 am via Twitter for iPhoneReplyRetweetFavorite
MagicMan 5X Champ

Tarver has not publicly provided an explanation for the presence of drostanolone in the “A” sample. He has the option of witnessing the opening and testing of the “B” sample.

A steroid positive would be an unfortunate way to close out the impressive career of the 43-year old Olympic medalist and former WBC, WBA and IBF champion.

Furthermore, the steroid positive has indefinitely disrupted his career as a boxing analyst for Showtime. Tarver has worked as a broadcaster for Showtime since 2009.  In light of the positive drostanolone test, Tarver did not appear on the Showtime network during the June 23rd main event featuring Josesito Lopez and Victor Ortiz.

Many of Tarver’s previous opponents have reacted to news of the positive steroid test. Kayode asserted that he won the fight in which Tarver was on steroids. But Kayode would only welcome a rematch if Tarver was drug-free.

“I would like to fight him again, but make sure he doesn’t use drugs,” said Kayode. “Even with the drugs, he couldn’t beat me, but if there are no drugs, I would fight him again.”

And Roy Jones Jr. is using the recent Tarver steroid scandal to suggest that Tarver may have used steroids as far back as 2004 when Tarver defeated Jones in a highly-touted rematch.

“The only problem I got is now that he’s tested positive for steroids, it’s very possible that he was on steroids when it happened,” said Jones.

How many other fighters will suggest Tarver used steroids to defeat them?

Photo credit: Eva Rinaldi / Flickr via Wikipedia


King, D. (June 23, 2012). Antonio Tarver Tests Positive for Drostanolone After Kayode Fight: Fan Reaction. Retrieved from http://sports.yahoo.com/news/antonio-tarver-tests-positive-drostanolone-kayode-fight-fan-050300068–box.html

Maquinana, R. (June 23, 2012). Lateef Kayode Reacts to Antonio Tarver’s Positive Test. Retrieved from http://www.boxingscene.com/lateef-kayode-reacts-antonio-tarvers-positive-test–54287

Furman, L. (June 30, 2012). Roy Jones: Very Possible Tarver Was on Steroids With Me. Retrieved from http://www.boxingscene.com/roy-jones-very-possible-tarver-on-steroids-with-me–54522