In the lead-up to their twelve-round fight on Saturday night at the Centre Videotron in Quebec City, Canada, Unified Light Heavyweight Champion Artur Beterbiev claimed to have heard that Callum Smith would be “looking for excuses” and disclosing information about his unusual VADA tests.
Beterbiev Denies Wrongdoing, Calls Out Smith’s Motive
Beterbiev (19-0, 19 KOs) criticized Callum Smith for “disseminating misleading information” regarding his plan to release the unusual results of his VADA test on December 6th in a statement posted on Kevin Iole’s website. On December 21st and January 3rd, Beterbiev had more testing; the results were negative.
To knock Beterbiev out on Saturday night, Smith (29-1, 21 KOs) shouldn’t incite anger in him and become even more motivated than he already is. Smith’s probing of Beterbiev has unintentionally roused a sleeping behemoth.
Both fighters have a lot riding on this battle because the victor advances to meet WBA champion Dmitry Bivol in the undisputed. Beterbiev has already executed the terms of the Bivol fight contract; all he needs to do now is beyond this last obstacle against Smith to secure the match, which is scheduled to happen in Saudi Arabia.
Beterbiev Sees “Excuses” and “Looking for a Way Out”
Russian Olympian Beterbiev declared, “I am a clean athlete,” after competing twice. Throughout my career, I have never tested positive for a prohibited substance. “Any attempt to imply otherwise, through innuendo or suggestion, is slanderous and libelous,” Beterbiev continued.
Beterbiev claims that he believes that to be “beyond trash talk,” suggesting that he is a filthy athlete. He believes that Callum is using this as a preemptive move to avoid taking the fall if he loses the fight on Saturday night.
It would be unfortunate if the news that Beterbiev’s test results from December 6th were abnormal affected their fight on Saturday, January 13.
The promoter of Callum Smith declared, “If this was our show and our fighter, there would be 400 people sticking microphones in my face.”