Ben Shalom Could Sue Eddie Hearn For His Comments On The Amir Khan Failed Test Situation
British boxing legend Amir Khan has been suspended for two years by the UK Anti-Doping Agency (UKAD) after he failed the post-fight drugs test for his bout against Kell Brook in February 2022.
Khan’s sample revealed trace amounts of ostarine, a muscle recovery drug. It was also confirmed earlier this week that an independent tribunal ruled that the substance was not taken intentionally, however, Khan is still responsible due to UKAD’s “strict liability” rule.
BBBofC’s general secretary Robert Smith has since confirmed he knew about the adverse finding from when the results were known last year. Ben Shalom, the promoter of the event, has insisted he had no knowledge of the failed test until the general public did earlier this week.
Rival promoter Eddie Hearn went on iFL TV earlier today refuting the claim. “People in boxing knew about this. I know a lot of people involved with that fight knew and when I say ‘knew’, there’s a difference between receiving correspondence from UKAD and knowing/hearing it has happened.”
“People from the promotion/the broadcast, certainly the BBBofC, they knew about that situation. Ben Shalom came out and said ‘I didn’t know anything about it, first time I ever heard about it was this morning and I spoke to Robert Smith (BBBofC), he’s not heard about it either’. Robert Smith knew about it months and months ago.”
Shalom responded to the statement from Hearn just hours later on the Fight Disciples podcast. “I’m actually shocked to see that and we don’t like to go back and forth, we don’t want to send legal letters, we don’t want to threaten but believe me something will be going on that. That is one of the most defamatory things I’ve ever seen said about me.”
“That upsets me because we put up with so much stuff, so many lies about ourselves and trying to be dragged into something we’re not part of. To see something like that, that goes to the very core of our values, that’s out of order beyond all belief. It’s got to the point where certain people feel they can say anything and any time on any day completely change every week anything and they get away with it.”
“Yes people might be charismatic, people might have big platforms, people might have dominated boxing for the last 10 years but it’s consistent defamatory stuff that isn’t true, it’s consistent. Usually, I wouldn’t respond, I don’t mind someone saying ‘We don’t know what we’re doing, our schedule is this, we’ve lost this fighter’, but … It’s so damaging to say something like that.”