Garcia wants B-sample analyzed after failed test

Boxing

Star boxer Ryan Garcia requested Monday that his B-sample be analyzed, according to a letter obtained by ESPN, connected to adverse findings in his A-sample for the performance-enhancing drug Ostarine the day before and the day of his upset win over Devin Haney last month.

Garcia, 25, had until Saturday to make the request. Garcia’s A-sample also screened positive for 19-Norandrosterone, according to the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association letter that was sent last Wednesday, but its presence is unconfirmed pending further lab analysis.

Ostarine is a selective androgen receptor modulator (SARM) that attaches to proteins in the body and effectively tells muscles to grow. It is used to aid performance by helping athletes build muscle mass and enhance their rate of fat loss and also to increase stamina and recovery ability.

Ostarine has been on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s banned list since 2008 and in 2022 was listed as an anabolic agent by WADA, whose rules mandate that when urine samples are collected, they are divided into A and B bottles.

The B-sample is a safeguard to ensure there was no lab contamination or error when the positive result was returned on the initial A-sample. If the B-sample returns a negative result in this instance, Garcia could be cleared.

If the B-sample also returns a positive result, Garcia and his legal team must present an argument to prove his innocence. He faces a suspension and a fine, and the result of his decision win over Haney will be overturned if he’s found guilty. The New York State Athletic Commission told ESPN last week that it “is in communication with VADA and is reviewing the matter.”

Garcia (25-1, 20 KOs) appeared to insinuate on social media that the adverse finding was the result of Ashwagandha Root, prompting the maker of said supplement, Gaia Herbs, to release a statement Thursday saying “contrary to any recent confusion [it] doesn’t contain Ostarine.”

“Everybody knows that I don’t cheat,” Garcia said in a video posted Wednesday on X, the day the adverse finding was revealed. “Never taken a steroid. … I don’t even know where to get steroids. … I barely take supplements.”

Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions said in a statement that they are working with Garcia’s team to “determine how this finding came to be.”

“Whoever got caught doping and admitted it? I think [Garcia] would have been the first [athlete] in history,” Haney, 25, said Thursday on SportsCenter. “… As of right now it wouldn’t be a [rematch] that I would entertain. This guy showed his character. He showed that he would do anything to win, including cheat. … He put my life in jeopardy. So now it’s deeper than boxing with me.”

Ostarine has been used in boxing before. Lucian Bute tested positive for it in 2016 following a draw with Badou Jack in their WBC super middleweight title fight. The result was changed to a DQ win for Jack.

Amir Khan was handed a two-year ban by UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) after he tested positive for Ostarine following his sixth-round TKO loss to Kell Brook in 2022.

Garcia floored Haney three times during the majority-decision victory. Garcia also missed weight ahead of the fight, registering 143.2 pounds for the WBC 140-pound title fight. Garcia paid Haney (31-1, 15 KOs) upward of $600,000 for his failure to make weight.

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