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Don King wants Bermane Stiverne named mandatory challenger to Deontay Wilder

Bermane Stiverne’s promoter is pushing the WBC to install Stiverne as their interim titlist following Alexander Povetkin’s failed drug test.

Bermane Stiverne v Chris Arreola Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images
Wil Esco is an assistant editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2014.

After Alexander Povetkin failed his second drug test of the year, promoter Don King is hoping that the WBC will name Bermane Stiverne their interim titlist which would also make him the mandatory challenger to Deontay Wilder, as reported by RingTV.

“To say that I am very saddened and extremely disappointed that Alexander Povetkin was caught again using banned substances would be an understatement,” King said in a prepared statement. “What is the WBC going to do about it will be the answer? Bermane Stiverne deserves better than that. Bermane should be declared the interim title holder. This is the second time Alexander Povetkin is in the drug abuse program and has embarrassed the WBC causing the WBC’s sanction of the fight as a world title fight being withdrawn.”

Povetkin tested positive for ostarine in a sample collected on Dec. 6, which ultimately nixed his fight with Stiverne less than a full day before it was to take place. The WBC withdrew their sanction of the fight, Stiverne flew home, and Povetkin got to face a last minute replacement in Johann Duhaupas whom he knocked out cold in six rounds.

Ironically enough, Stiverne himself tested positive for banned substance methylhexaneamine leading into this fight, but the WBC chose to fine him $75,000 and make him enroll in a strict drug testing regiment at his own expense. The sanctioning body said that there was no evidence that Stiverne, whom had never failed a drug test before, knowingly ingested the substance, which Stiverne said was contained in a 5 hour energy drink.

In the meanwhile, the WBC plans on investigating the circumstances surrounding Povetkin’s newly-failed drug test, and expects to finish their inquiry in the first quarter of 2017.

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