What Was Oscar Valdez’s ‘Herbal Tea’ Controversy?

Published 04/30/2022, 4:18 AM EDT

The WBC super featherweight champion, Oscar Valdez, will take on Shakur Stevenson in a highly anticipated fight on April 30, in Las Vegas, for the super featherweight unification. Although the Mexican’s boxing fight record has been spotless with a 20-0, his career isn’t.

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LAS VEGAS, NV – APRIL 08: Oscar Valdez poses on the scale during his official weigh-in at MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 8, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Valdez will face Evgeny Gradovich in a featherweight fight on April 9 in Las Vegas. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Last year, Valdez was the center of a controversy for using banned substances that tainted his otherwise clean image. However, Valdez faced no consequences for this incident.

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Oscar Valdez tested positive

Every fighter goes through a test for detecting the use of banned substances, if any, before their fight. It’s a common tradition to ensure no illegal and banned substances are being used to enhance their performance. However, on August 31, 2021, Valdez failed both his A- and B- sample VADA tests.

This controversy occurred ahead of his lightweight title defense against Robson Conceicao. However, the Mexican-born fighter took to social media to come clean about his controversy over test results. He stated, “I have never used banned substances to enhance my performance.”

Additionally, in an interview with ESPN, Valdez claimed herbal tea to be the reason for failing his test. He stated, “The only difference is that I’ve taken herbal tea. That’s the reason why I would think that could possibly be, but I’m still not 100% how that got into my body.”

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Even though the 31-year-old tested positive, he was neither stripped of his title nor was the scheduled match sanctioned. Consequently, Valdez went on to defeat the Gold Medalist, Robson Conceicao, via decision and retained his title.

The rise of Valdez

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Oscar Valdez made his professional debut in his hometown of Sonora against Angel Prado on November 3, 2012. The Mexican emphatically defeated Prado with a second-round knockout. Following that, Valdez has convincingly defeated many boxers and defended his title.

Many boxers in the past have been a subject of a doping controversy. Notably, Canelo Alvarez was given a six-month suspension for a banned substance use violation ahead of his fight against Gennady Golovkin in 2018. Hence, this controversy hasn’t haunted Valdez.

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WATCH THIS STORY: Shakur Stevenson Issues Bone-Chilling Warning to Oscar Valdez

What do you think about Valdez’s controversy? Let us know in the comments below.

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Darsh Karkera

77 articles

Darsh Karkera is a Boxing author at EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing his masters in Clinical Psychology at CHRIST University, Bangalore. According to Darsh himself, the one and only one thing that fuels him, is sports.

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