Eight-division titlewinner Manny Pacquiao and once-beaten junior welterweight contender Brandon Rios are considering random drug testing by either The United State Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) or The Voluntary Anti-Doping Association (VADA) in advance of their bout in Macau on Nov. 23 (Nov. 24 in China), according to Pacquiao’s advisor Michael Koncz, and Top Rank CEO Bob Arum, the event promoter.
“The fact is that Manny has requested random drug testing for this fight. We still haven’t decided which entity we’ll use,” said Koncz of the Pacquiao-Rios fight, which will happen on HBO Pay Per View.
“It’s going to be either USADA or [VADA.] It will be one of the two. We still haven’t decided. We’re still discussing it, but the bottom line is that there will be mandatory drug testing.”
Pacquiao (54-5-2, 38 knockouts) is attempting to rebound from consecutive losses by disputed split decision to WBO beltholder Tim Bradley and sixth-round knockout to Juan Manuel Marquez last June and December.
Marquez was angered by the notion that he might be under the influence of performance enhancing drugs prior to his third and fourth bouts with Pacquiao, who is now 2-1-1 against Marquez.
Pacquiao was similarly targeted by Floyd Mayweather Jr., his father, Floyd Mayweather Sr., and his uncle and trainer, Roger Mayweather, and eventually filed a defamation lawsuit against the Mayweathers, which was settled out of court.
The differences between Pacquiao and Mayweather contributed to failed negotiations for a megabout.
Now, it is Pacquiao who wants the testing.
“We’ll use one or the other of them. There will be drug testing,” said Arum. “I don’t know necessarily if I will want to use USADA. I might want to use VADA, but there will definitely be drug testing.”
PETER QUILLIN: ‘I’M BECOMING THE FULL PACKAGE’
WBO middleweight beltholder Peter Quillin wants to take the fast track to unifying the middleweight division, according to his management.
If successful, Quillin would become the first man to unite boxing’s four 160-pound belts since Bernard Hopkins.
In September of 2004, Hopkins knocked out Oscar De La Hoya to become the sport’s first-ever four-belt middleweight champion by adding De La Hoya’s WBO belt to the IBF, WBA and WBC belts he already owned.
Australian IBF titleholder Daniel Geale (29-1, 15 KOs) scored his eighth straight victory with January’s unanimous decision over countryman and three-time titleholder Anthony Mundine to avenge Mundine’s split-decision victory over Geale in May of 2009.
In a statement released by his management, Quillin said he would like to face either Martinez or Geale.
“I want to fight one of the other champions,” said Quillin, 29, who scored six knockdowns vs. N’Dam, and four knockdowns vs. Guerrero.
“Sergio Martinez would be my first choice, but he’s injured and out for the rest of the year. Geale is the IBF champion and that, right now, looks like the easiest unification fight to make.”
“We’ll fight anybody in a unification or major fight. Peter was awesome in his last fight. He really hurts his opponents with both hands,” said John Seip, who co-manages Quillin with Jim McDevitt.
“He connected on 50 percent of his power punches against Guerrero and that’s an astronomical number. Nobody in this division can handle him. It’s a numbers game, now. The promoters and networks have to put egos aside and give fans what they want with Peter in a major fight.”
“And one other knockdown in my fight before that [N’Jikam,] against Winky [Wright,] making it 11 knockdowns in my last three fights. I never want to lose and just work hard to win every fight,” said Quillin.
“I challenge myself in training camp for every fight and I have great trainers. I’m improving every fight. I’ve gained valuable experience, become more confident since becoming world champion, and feel very comfortable in the ring. In my last fight, I showed improvement in ring generalship, composure, and even my interviewing skills. I’m becoming the full package.”
Photos by Naoki Fukuda
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com