Former two-time Welterweight champion Andre Berto has received a boxing license in California three months after he tested positive for a banned substance prior to his rematch with Victor Ortiz according to Dan Rafael of espn.com
“As someone who truly believes in clean sport, I have never used any type of performance-enhancing drugs,” Berto said in a statement. “Everything I’ve achieved was the result of hard work and determination. I am excited that this whole situation is behind me, and I look forward to returning to the ring soon with another exciting performance, so stay tuned.”
“We sent all of the medical material to California and he was issued a license,” said promoter Lou DiBella, who has promoted Berto for his entire career. “I’m glad he’s back in the ring with his eye on the prize, and in the future he’ll be more careful. He wasn’t on a steroid program. It was probably a tainted substance that caused the positive test. That is my belief. Right now, Andre Berto is focused on getting back in the ring. He’s looking forward to his next fight taking place as soon as possible.”
DiBella said there were no specific plans in the works for Berto’s return.
“He just got licensed (Tuesday),” DiBella said. “We were hoping the license would be coming, and now we can get to work on his next fight.”
Josesito Lopez will step in to face Victor Ortiz on June 23rd in Los Angeles after Andre Berto tested positive for a banned substance according to Dan Rafael of espn.com
“(Golden Boy) offered the fight to us on Friday afternoon. I got a call from (Goossen Tutor Promotions matchmaker) Tom Brown saying we got the offer and I said, ‘We’ll take it,'” Lopez’ trainer/manager Henry Ramirez said. “We’re excited. We’re ecstatic. Our job is to get the biggest fight out there for Josesito that we can for the best money we can get, and this is that fight.”
“We’ve explored a variety of potential opponents, and so far Lopez seems to be the best available opponent that will take the fight on short notice,” Showtime Sports general manager Stephen Espinoza told ESPN.com. “He is a strong, tough and experienced fighter, and he’s looked particularly good in his last few fights. I like this matchup, and I hope a deal can be worked out.”
Junior welterweight Humberto Soto (58-7-2, 34 KOs) and Lucas Matthysse (30-2, 28 KOs) will still meet in the Showtime co-featured bout, but Riverside, Calif., heavyweight contender Cristobal Arreola (35-2, 30 KOs), who is also trained by Ramirez, will be added to the card to make it into a televised tripleheader. The fight figures to be Arreola’s final bout before an anticipated heavyweight championship shot against Wladimir Klitschko in November.
“Pending approval of the opponent, the Arreola bout would be added to undercard on the Showtime broadcast,” Espinoza said
“My guy has been in the gym, so all we have to do is just change the date of the fight by one day and change our sparring partners,” said Ramirez, noting that Lopez was preparing for the right-handed Holt and now will be facing a left-hander in Ortiz.
“Holt pulls out on us and then this drops in our lap, so we’re excited,” Ramirez said. “The kid (Lopez) will make probably four or five times his biggest purse (which was $35,000) for this fight with Ortiz and a lot more than he would have gotten to fight Holt. So we are in a no-lose situation here because it’s a great opportunity, it’s a good payday and it’s a fight we believe that we can win.
“Lopez puts pressure on his opponents and we know Ortiz doesn’t like pressure and we also know he doesn’t have the biggest heart in the world. We’ve seen him quit before” in a sixth-round knockout loss to Marcos Maidana in a 2009 interim junior welterweight title bout.
According to Dan Rafael of espn.com, former two-time Welterweight world champion Andre Berto has tested positive for a banned substance which no puts in doubt his June 23rd rematch with Victor Ortiz.
Promoter Lou DiBella told ESPN.com he was unsure of what Berto tested positive for but confirmed the result.
“I know he tested positive,” DiBella said. “I have nothing else to say. I don’t know all of the details so I have nothing else to say.”
“Obviously, we are disappointed that Berto’s ‘B’ sample came back positive,” Schaefer, Ortiz’s promoter, told ESPN.com. “I was informed late Saturday of the ‘A’ sample testing positive and urged an immediate testing of the ‘B’ sample. We just got the results that the ‘B’ sample tested positive as well. It’s unfortunate. We have to see what happened because I don’t know.
“This is obviously a very unpleasant situation to say the least, but at the same time, there is no room for any form of performance-enhancing drug use in boxing. I am not accusing Berto of anything, but that happens when you want to clean up the sport and you agree as a fighter and promoter to go through these kinds of procedures. I hope this will lead athletes to be more careful with what they eat or drink or take. Everybody needs to educate themselves more about what is permitted and what it is not permitted. But if it takes two or three or four fights to be canceled, so be it. There can be zero tolerance for the use of banned substances.”
“At the present time, I cannot explain the positive drug test, which was provided as part of a voluntary anti-doping program in which I agreed to participate,” Berto said in a statement. “I know that I have never used any steroids or other banned substances, and I am investigating all possible causes of the positive test with my attorney, Howard Jacobs. I have never cheated, and all of my success has come from hard work and dedication.”
Berto has had Victor Conte, founder of the notorious Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative, in his training camp for this fight.
Conte, however, denied he had any involvement in the positive test.
“Andre Berto’s positive test for (norandrosterone) has absolutely nothing to do with me or any supplements I provided. Likely trace contamination,” Conte tweeted. “Andre has admitted to taking supplements other than what I provided without my knowledge. Apparently, something was contaminated.”
“We did our job. We stand by the integrity of the test and the testing process,” said Dr. Margaret Goodman, who heads VADA and is a former chief ringside physician for the Nevada State Athletic Commission. “It’s not our role to determine what comes next for Mr. Berto. At this point it would be inappropriate for me to discuss the matter further with the media.”
After the fight last year, Berto accused Ortiz of using performance-enhancing drugs in his upset victory. Now it is Berto who has tested positive, an irony not lost on Rolando Arellano, Ortiz’s manager.
“When you point the finger there’s three pointing back at you, but we will take the high road,” Arellano said. “We’re going to give this guy the benefit of the doubt.
“We want to fight him and he wants to fight us, so we are going to wait until there is a complete fact finding in this case. We know what VADA has to say and we’re curious what about what Berto has to say. Hopefully, there is something that went wrong. Maybe the jars got mixed up. But it doesn’t look that way. Victor will go on, but this is awful for boxing fans who wanted to see another fight of the year.”
Arellano said he informed Ortiz of Berto’s positive test and his response was “complete and utter silence. Then he said, ‘I’m going to the gym.'”
Schaefer and Showtime both told ESPN.com they have no intention of canceling the card. “This means another terrific fight that fans were looking forward to appears like it’s not going to happen,” Schaefer said. “I want to know what the origins of this (positive test) are. I have been told that it could have something to do with food contamination. But I’m not going to go and cancel the event. Let’s learn more, let’s see what will happen. In the meantime, my team is working behind the scenes to come up with an alternative opponent.”
NEW YORK (May 9, 2012) – FIGHT CAMP 360°, the acclaimed documentary series, which launched during the Super Six World Boxing Classic, returns ahead of the highly anticipated June 23 edition of SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING featuring Victor Ortiz vs. Andre Berto. SHOWTIME Sports® will produce three episodes of FIGHT CAMP 360°: Ortiz vs. Berto II, shining its unique spotlight into the lives and personalities of both of these compelling young fighters as they prepare for the rematch of the 2011 Fight of the Year (USA Today, The Ring magazine). The first episode will premiere on Wednesday, June 13, at 10 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME®.
The series-which has been called “gritty” and “outstanding” by ESPN and “the most groundbreaking concept the sport has seen in years” by MaxBoxing-will again give fight fans unfiltered access behind the scenes of the sweet science. Episode one will highlight the lives of Ortiz and Berto over the last four months, including Berto’s rehabilitation for the torn left biceps injury that postponed the bout. Episode two, premiering Wednesday, June 20, at 10 p.m. on SHOWTIME, will bring fight fans the intensity of the final preparations for this career-defining fight.
In addition to the two 30-minute preview episodes in anticipation of Ortiz vs. Berto II, SHOWTIME Sports will produce a 15-minute wrap-up episode to premiere one week following the fight on Saturday, June 30, at 9 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME.
Installments one and two of FIGHT CAMP 360°: Ortiz vs. Berto II will replay on CBS Sports Network, SHOWTIME and SHOWTIME EXTREME (full schedule listed below). Additionally, the episodes will be available on SHOWTIME On Demand.
In April 2011, Ortiz and Berto engaged in one of the most thrilling fights of the year, with both men hitting the canvas twice before Ortiz rallied to victory and captured Berto’s World Boxing Council (WBC) Welterweight World Championship. On Saturday, June 23, these rugged and determined fighters will meet once again, this time at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, Calif., in a highly anticipated 12-round welterweight rematch live on SHOWTIME at 9 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast).
#OrtizBerto2 @VICIOUSOrtiz @AndreBerto
@SHOsports @goldenboyboxing @OscardelaHoya @loudibella @staplescenterla
Visit sports.sho.com for more info
SHOWTIME / SHOWTIME EXTREME Schedule
Wednesday, June 13 10 p.m. ET/PT Episode 1 SHOWTIME (PREMIERE)
Wednesday, June 13 12 Midnight ET/PT Episode 1 SHOWTIME EXTREME
Thursday, June 14 10 p.m. ET/PT Episode 1 SHOWTIME EXTREME
Friday, June 15 10 p.m. ET/PT Episode 1 SHOWTIME EXTREME
Friday, June 15 12 Midnight ET/PT Episode 1 SHOWTIME
Monday, June 18 10 p.m. ET/PT Episode 1 SHOWTIME EXTREME
Tuesday, June 19 10 p.m. ET/PT Episode 1 SHOWTIME EXTREME
Wednesday, June 20 10 p.m. ET/PT Episode 2 SHOWTIME (PREMIERE)
Wednesday, June 20 11 p.m. ET/PT Episode 2 SHOWTIME EXTREME
Thursday, June 21 10 p.m. ET/PT Episode 1 SHOWTIME EXTREME
Thursday, June 21 10:30 p.m. ET/PT Episode 2 SHOWTIME EXTREME
Friday, June 22 10 p.m. ET/PT Episode 1 SHOWTIME EXTREME
Friday, June 22 10:30 p.m. ET/PT Episode 2 SHOWTIME EXTREME
Saturday, June 23 1 p.m. ET/PT Episode 1 SHOWTIME
Saturday, June 23 1:30 p.m. ET/PT Episode 2 SHOWTIME
Saturday June 23 6 p.m. ET/PT Episode 1 SHOWTIME EXTREME
Saturday, June 23 6:30 p.m. ET/PT Episode 2 SHOWTIME EXTREME
CBS Sports Network Schedule
Wednesday, June 13 12 Midnight ET/9 p.m. PT Episode 1 CBS Sports Network
Wednesday, June 13 3 a.m. ET/12 Midnight PT Episode 1 CBS Sports Network
Thursday, June 14 10:30 p.m. ET/7:30 p.m. PT Episode 1 CBS Sports Network
Wednesday, June 20 12 Midnight ET/9 p.m. PT Episode 2 CBS Sports Network
Wednesday, June 20 3 a.m. ET/12 Midnight PT Episode 2 CBS Sports Network
Thursday, June 21 10:30 p.m. ET/7:30 p.m. PT Episode 2 CBS Sports Network
Friday, June 22 12 Midnight ET/9 p.m. PT Episode 1 CBS Sports Network
Friday, June 22 12:30 a.m. ET/9:30 p.m. PT Episode 2 CBS Sports Network
“Repeat or Revenge: Ortiz vs. Berto II” is the highly anticipated 12-round welterweight rematch of USA Today and Ring Magazine’s 2011 Fight of the Year between former World Champions “Vicious” Victor Ortiz and Andre Berto which will take place Saturday, Feb. 11 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev. The co-featured fights will see top contenders Erislandy Lara and Ronald Hearns square off and 2011 “Prospect of the Year” Gary Russell Jr. take on Dat Nguyen. The event is promoted by Golden Boy Promotions and DiBella Entertainment and will air live on SHOWTIME at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the west coast). A special three-fight undercard telecast will air live on SHOWTIME EXTREME® beginning at 7:00 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the west coast).
FIGHT CAMP 360°: Ortiz vs. Berto II
The acclaimed documentary series which launched during the Super Six World Boxing Classic tournament returns ahead of the highly anticipated Feb. 11 edition of SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING featuring Victor Ortiz vs. Andre Berto. Episode one of FIGHT CAMP 360°: Ortiz vs. Berto II will shine its unique spotlight into the lives and personalities of both of these compelling young fighters as they prepare for the rematch of the 2011 Fight of the Year (USA Today, The Ring magazine). Episode two will chronicle the intensity of fight week, the drama of fight night from multiple perspectives and the aftermath of this career-defining bout.
About Showtime Networks Inc.
Showtime Networks Inc. (SNI), a wholly-owned subsidiary of CBS Corporation, owns and operates the premium television networks SHOWTIME®, THE MOVIE CHANNEL™ and FLIX®, as well as the multiplex channels SHOWTIME 2™, SHOWTIME® SHOWCASE, SHOWTIME EXTREME®, SHOWTIME BEYOND®, SHOWTIME NEXT®, SHOWTIME WOMEN®, SHOWTIME FAMILY ZONE® and THE MOVIE CHANNEL™ XTRA. SNI also offers SHOWTIME HD™, THE MOVIE CHANNEL™ HD, SHOWTIME ON DEMAND® and THE MOVIE CHANNEL™ ON DEMAND, and the network’s authentication service SHOWTIME ANYTIME®. SNI also manages Smithsonian Networks, a joint venture between SNI and the Smithsonian Institution, which offers Smithsonian Channel™. All SNI feeds provide enhanced sound using Dolby Digital 5.1. SNI markets and distributes sports and entertainment events for exhibition to subscribers on a pay-per-view basis through SHOWTIME PPV®.
HUMBERTO SOTO VS. LUCAS MATTHYSSE IN CO-MAIN EVENT
SHOWTIME TO TELECAST DOUBLEHEADER FROM
STAPLES CENTER IN LOS ANGELES
LOS ANGELES, April 16 – At long last, the rematch of 2011’s Fight of the Year between former World Champions “Vicious” Victor Ortiz and Andre Berto originally scheduled for February 11 in Las Vegas, but postponed when Berto sustained an arm injury on January 30, has been rescheduled for Saturday, June 23 at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, this time for the vacant WBC Silver Welterweight Championship. In the co-main event, scheduled for 12 rounds in the super lightweight division, former Three Division World Champion Humberto Soto squares off against Argentine knockout artist Lucas Matthysse. The doubleheader will be telecast live on SHOWTIME.
As agreed to when the fight was scheduled for February, both fighters will be subject to Olympic style drug testing which will be administered by the Volunteer Anti-Doping Association (VADA) and will include random blood and urine tests.
“I will not underestimate Andre Berto because of his injury,” said Ortiz. “I hope and expect a new and improved Andre Berto. I am training for the greatest Andre Berto ever. I want to give the fans the best fight because that’s what they expect from both of us. I am going to be World Champ again, there is no doubt about that. There is only one option for me…victory!”
“The arm is feeling great and I’m ready to get in there and handle some unfinished business on June 23,” said Berto. “This is guaranteed to be an explosive fight that you don’t want to miss. Los Angeles has become a second home to me, so I’m excited to perform for all the fans at STAPLES Center this summer.”
“It’s been a long wait since February, but I’m glad that we’re finally going to see this rematch between two of boxing’s top young stars,” said Oscar de la Hoya, President of Golden Boy Promotions. “Ortiz and Berto went to war the first time and I’m expecting the same scenario to play out this time. These boxers only know one way to fight and that’s moving forward, which means we’re in for another great battle.”
“Berto-Ortiz I was a ‘Fight of the Year’ candidate and boxing fans can expect more of the same in this fight,” said Lou DiBella, President of DiBella Entertainment. “It was unfortunate that Andre suffered the injury and the rematch had to be postponed, but we are happy that we were able to reschedule this much anticipated fight and are looking forward to another great night on June 23.”
“Ortiz vs. Berto II: The Rematch,” is the highly anticipated 12-round welterweight rematch of USA Today and Ring Magazine’s 2011 Fight of the Year between former World Champions “Vicious” Victor Ortiz and Andre Berto for the vacant WBC Silver Welterweight Championship which will take place Saturday, June 23 at at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, Calif. The event is promoted by Golden Boy Promotions and DiBella Entertainment and sponsored by Corona, DeWalt Tools and AT&T. The co-feature will see former Three-Division World Champion Humberto “Zorrita” Sotobattle Argentinean knockout artist Lucas Matthysse in a 12-round super lightweight fight presented in association with Baja Boxing Promotions and Arano Box Promotions. The double-header will be telecast live on SHOWTIME Championship Boxing at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast).
Tickets, priced at $250, $150, $100 and $50, are available for purchase online at www.staplescenter.com and www.ticketmaster.com or via Ticketmaster charge-by-phone lines at (800) 745-3000. Tickets will also be available at STAPLES Center box office beginning Tuesday, April 17.
Everyone anticipated an action-packed fight the first time that Victor Ortiz and Andre Berto stepped into the ring back on April 16, 2011 with the WBC Welterweight World Championship on the line. What ensued was nothing less than spectacular as the pair stormed out of the gate, setting a fast pace that would continue for the entire 12-round contest. Midway through the first round, Ortiz staggered Berto with a sneaky right hand, then backed him into a corner and followed up with a barrage of punches which forced the defending champion to take a knee in order to recover. Berto wasted little time returning the favor, sending Ortiz to the canvas with a counter right hand at the end of the second round. The exciting battle continued round after round, and in the sixth frame, Berto landed a right hand that dropped Ortiz. As soon as the action resumed, Berto was all over Ortiz, looking to close the show. With Ortiz trapped against the ropes and Berto throwing caution to the wind, Ortiz threw a left hook that caught Berto flush on the chin, dropping him for the second time in the fight just seconds before the bell. The back-and-forth action continued for the second half of the “Fight of the Year” candidate. In the end, Ortiz had captured the title with a hard-fought unanimous decision victory, winning by scores of 115-110, 114-111 and 114-112.
The star of Victor Ortiz (29-3-2, 22 KO’s) has been on the rise for the last few years, but in 2011, the native of Garden City, Kansas finally put everything together for the entire world to see. The owner of wins over Mike Arnaoutis, Nate Campbell and Antonio Diaz, Ortiz stepped it up in April 2011 with a 12-round decision win over Berto that captivated the boxing world and earned him the WBC Welterweight Championship. Five months later, Ortiz lost a controversial bout to pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather, but with his rematch against Berto looming, the 25-year old now has the perfect opportunity to get back to the top of the division.
A member of the 2004 Haitian Olympic team, Andre Berto (28-1, 22 KO’s), like Ortiz, has been leading the charge of boxing’s next generation, thrilling fans with exciting fights and blistering knockouts. Crowned a world champion in 2008, the 28-year-old Berto successfully defended his WBC crown five times against the likes of Luis Collazo, Steve Forbes and Juan Urango before losing it to Ortiz in April. In September, Berto put gold around his waist once again by stopping Jan Zaveck in five rounds for the IBF title. He would soon vacate the title in order to take the fight he has been clamoring for since April and now he’s looking forward to evening the score with Ortiz on June 23.
A lanky boxer-puncher with frightening accuracy and a busy attack in the ring, Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico native Humberto “La Zorrita” Soto (58-7-2, 34 KO’s) has been a World Champion at featherweight, super featherweight and lightweight, making eight total defenses of his crowns against the likes of Oscar Leon, Francisco Lorenzo and Urbano Antillon. Unbeaten since 2008, Soto went 4-0 in 2011, defeating Fidel Munoz, Motoki Sasaki, Jose Alfaro and Adailton De Jesus, firmly establishing himself in his new division at 140 pounds with the 31-year-old being ranked number two in the world by the WBC and number three by the WBA. In his most recent bout on April 7, Soto decisioned Claudinei Lacerda and now looks to stay busy by facing another competitor in the always-tough Matthysse.
Currently ranked fifth in the world by the WBC, sixth by the WBO and seventh by the WBA, Trelew, Argentina’s Lucas Matthysse (30-2, 28 KO’s) is a ferocious puncher with concussive knockout power in both hands, instantly making him a fan favorite wherever he steps between the ropes. Despite having scored knockouts in his last six victories, fans may best remember the 29-year-old for his 2010 and 2011 bouts with former World Champions Zab “Super” Judah and Devon Alexander “The Great”, respectively. In both bouts, the aggressive Matthysse dropped and hurt his foes, only to lose controversial split decisions that the boxing community met with outrage. Undeterred, Matthysse has kept his eyes on the prize, promising to never leave matters in the judges’ hands ever again.
The fight will now take place at the Mandalay Bay instead of the MGM Grand.
“Being cautious, Berto should be prepared to fight in about four months,” said Berto’s promoter Lou DiBella. “The fight is going to happen and the fight is going to happen next. My expectation is it will happen next within about four months, somewhere between late May and late June. I’ve talked to Showtime and they’ll accommodate it. This is a fight they want very much.”
Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer said he was unsure what would happen with the other two bouts that were scheduled to be part of the Showtime tripleheader — junior middleweight contender Erislandy Lara against Ronald Hearns and featherweight Gary Russell Jr., the 2011 ESPN.com prospect of the year, against Dat Nguyen — but that he was working on it.
“We don’t want to wait until June,” said Luis DeCubas Jr., Lara’s manager. “If he did, that would be just about a year since his last fight (a highly controversial decision loss to Paul Williams last July). That’s too long. Either we’re hoping to reschedule Hearns as quickly as we can or we hope to move on to a bigger fight. But we need to start working things out. Right now they don’t know, but I know Richard is working on it.”
Photo by Claudia Bocanegra
POSSIBLE POSTPONEMENT DATE BEING DISCUSSED
LOS ANGELES (January 31) – Due to a left biceps injury sustained while training on Monday, January 30, Andre Berto will be unable to compete in his scheduled February 11 SHOWTIME televised bout against Victor Ortiz at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev., forcing a cancellation of the event on that date. All parties involved are actively seeking a possible postponement date for Ortiz vs. Berto II.
Information regarding previously purchased tickets being honored for a possible postponement date will be released as it becomes available or, alternatively, ticketholders can contact their place of purchase for refunds.
More information will be announced as it becomes available.
According to Dan Rafael of espn.com, Former two-time Welterweight champion Andre Berto injured his arm in training today which now puts in doubt his February 11th rematch with former champion Victor Ortiz.
“He had to go the hospital to get it checked out and he is hurt. I know the fight is in jeopardy of not happening on that date. It didn’t sound good,” one source said.
On whether the fight would be postponed, another source said, “When one of the guys in the fight is in the hospital for an arm injury two weeks before the fight, that is bad news.