Mexican fighter Erik Morales, scheduled to fight Danny Garcia Saturday night for the unified light middleweight titles and help christen the return of championship boxing to Brooklyn, has tested positive for an anabolic steroid, according to a person with knowledge of the test results.
The person spoke to USA TODAY Sports on the condition of anonymity because the test results were supposed to remain confidential.
The person said Morales, 36, tested positive Tuesday during a random pre-fight drug test conducted by the United States Anti-Doping Association (USADA), and that the B sample will not be tested until after the fight.
Although the New York State Athletic Commission has the final say, it's expected that Morales will be allowed to fight but it's unsure if he will be eligible to fight for the championship belt.
Morales has never tested positive in the past, but he came in over the 140-pound limit for his first fight against Garcia in March, and was stripped of his title on the scales. Garcia won that fight by unanimous decision and claimed the vacant WBC belt.
Morales is the fourth high-profile boxer to test positive for banned substances this year. Light welterweight Lamont Peterson, welterweight Andre Berto and cruiserweight Antonio Tarver also tested positive. Peterson and Berto tested positive before their fights, and were not allowed to fight, and Tarver's positive test was discovered after his fight against Lateef Kayode that was judged a draw.
Morales and Garcia are the headline bout for the first championship boxing card in Brooklyn since 1931 -- to be held at the brand new Barclays Center (Showtime, 8 p.m. ET). There are three other championship fights on the card, including Brooklynite Paulie Malignaggi vs. Pablo Cesar Cano; Hassan N'Jikam vs. Peter Quillan and Devon Alexander vs. Randall Bailey.
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