Dan Rafael reports that Jean Pascal has failed a test for the substance erythropoietin, also known as EPO, making this the fourth banned substance in an eye-popping batch of positive tests over the past several days.
The immediate, short-term damage had already been done, as he was quickly dropped from his scheduled matchup against Badou Jack on Showtime’s June 6th PPV featuring Floyd Mayweather vs Logan Paul. But in terms of reputation, looming suspension, and plausible deniability, this one might really end up hurting.
Observers are likely more familiar with EPO than the trio of epitrenbolone, drostanolone, and drostanolone metabolite A. Lance Armstrong, for example, used EPO regularly throughout his competitions. More recently, MMA star TJ Dillashaw tested positive for EPO, earning himself a two-year suspension from which he’s set to return next month.
Another significant aspect of Pascal failing a test for EPO is that it’s going to be harder for him to plead ignorance and blame his recently fired strength and conditioning coach this time around. EPO is administered by injection, so it’s not like he can blame it on devious team members or tainted supplements.