By Karl Freitag
After some tense moments with the fight hanging in the balance, the camp of WBA super bantamweight champion and former two-time Cuban Olympic gold medalist Guillermo Rigondeaux signed off on the use of VADA testing in advance of the April unification against WBO jr featherweight champion Nonito “Filipino Flash” Donaire to take place at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.
Bob Arum: You’ve heard a lot about drug testing. The fighters want this to be a completely clean fight. So they’ve signed a protocol that says that the drug testing organization, which is VADA, and any other organization which might be added, will submit its reports to the fight camps, to the promoter, in confidence, and to the New York State Athletic Commission who will be the only entity that has jurisdiction over what action if any to take based on those reports. And we feel confident in that system, putting it on an orderly basis because we have confidence in Melvina Lathan, we have confidence in the medical staff of the NYSAC, maybe not so much the eye doctors, but all the rest of the guys (laughter). The eye doctors are very good although we had a little disagreement a while ago (a reference to the Antonio Margarito situation in 2011). We really believe this is the way to go for the sport. We advocate drug testing, but we want it to be done in an orderly manner, not with the wildness that we’ve seen with some of these events in the past.
Rigondeaux trainer Pedro Diaz: Nonito Donaire claimed that Guillermo Rigondeaux didn’t want to do anti-doping testing. We are willing to do random testing at any time from now to the day of the fight. I’d like something to be very clear. In the morning the news came out that we don’t want to do the testing and in the afternoon they said VADA was going to be doing the testing. That’s fine and we accept that…VADA is an association that’s voluntary. USADA is an organization that does testing for Olympic athletes in the United States and is also the agency that the best boxer in the ring for business uses, which is Floyd Mayweather, and also another great star Miguel Cotto and other athletes. That’s why we proposed to Nonito and his team that we are prepared for USADA to be part of this testing also. They can conduct urine and blood tests randomly whenever that want from now to the day of the fight.
Guillermo Rigondeaux: On April 13 the fight is confirmed. We’re moving forward. Get ready for April 13.
Nonito Donaire: They’re gonna train hard, I’m gonna train hard. April 13 is the day people will know who is the best 122-pounder….I still believe he needs experience.