Heavyweight Erkan Teper Has His Suspension Suspended and Stays Undefeated


On Sunday in Luneburg, Niedersochsen, Germany, Erkan Teper kept his undefeated record intact with a 10-round unanimous decision over sturdy but limited Derric Rossy. Teper, 16-0 (10), won by scores of 98-92, 97-93, and 96-94. There were no knockdowns.

The 34-year-old, six-foot-five Teper, born in Germany of Turkish descent, was making his first start since July 17 of last year when he blasted British giant David Price into la-la land with a fierce left hook. It came in the second round. Price hit the canvas with a thud and the referee waved the bout off without a count.

Then things got messy.

In December it was announced that Teper had failed both his pre-fight and post-fight drug tests. The European Boxing Union slapped him with a two-year suspension. The five-month delay in releasing the information sent his promoter Team Sauerland into a spasm of indignation, but their howling ceased when it was revealed that Teper was a serial offender. He had previously been suspended for banned substances by the German Boxing Commission which never took the trouble of notifying the EBU. 

Things got even messier when a German news agency reported that Teper faced criminal charges resulting from a raid in which a cornucopia of PEDs was found in his apartment. The brouhaha forced the cancellation of a match between Teper and Robert Helenius although the reason given was that Teper had suffered a shoulder injury.

In fighting Derric Rossy, Teper thumbed his nose at the European Boxing Union. That could also be said of the German commission which allowed the bout to go forward although Teper hadn’t finished serving their one-year suspension. The commission is no stranger to controversy. In 2012, German regulators came under fire for approving a match in Hamburg between Francesco Pianeta and then 47-year-old Oliver McCall although McCall was under medical suspension in Florida. (McCall lost a 10-round decision.)

Rossy, a former starting defensive end at Boston College, hails from Long Island’s Suffolk County. He hoped to borrow a leaf from the notebook of Suffolk’s Joe Smith Jr. who boosted his stock enormously with a first round knockout of Andrzej Fonfara, but instead suffered his seventh loss in his last nine starts. His record now stands at 30-12 (14).

In July of last year, as Anthony Joshua was advancing toward a world title shot, his promoter, Eddie Hearn, identified Erkan Teper as a potential opponent for his fast-rising star. Presumably Teper needs to notch a few more wins and, more importantly, stay clean to get back in the mix. He is a pariah in England and it will take time to repair his tarnished reputation.

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