Pacquiao and mayweather camps in doping penalty row

Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao have reportedly entered into a dispute over a proposed doping penalty before their much-awaited fight at the May 2 welterweight world title fight in Las Vegas. Pacquiao is expected to make at least $80 million while Mayweather is expected to make at least $120 million for the much anticipated fight, billed as “Fight of the Century“.

Mayweather Promotions chief executive Leonard Ellerbe told the Los Angeles Times that the drug testing protocol for the fight had been “rigorously negotiated” by Pacquiao promoters Top Rank. Pacquiao’s adviser Michael Koncz told the same newspaper that it was a little puzzling for him to learn that Floyd Mayweather would not agree to the $5m (£3.37m) penalty that was proposed by representatives of Manny Pacquiao should either fighter test positive for a banned drug.

It was first suggested by Pacquiao that the reciprocal fine for a failed drug test was extra insurance that an instance of doping would not jeopardize the fight that fans have long waited for. But, Ellerbe said the arrangement was an attempt to put a $5m price tag if Manny tested positive and added that it will cost Manny a lot more than some $5m if he comes up positive.

Ellerbe’s comments were echoed by Top Rank boss Bob Arum who said that Mayweather is right as there is no need of it since they would be penalized by more than $5 million by the Nevada Athletic Commission if ever they become positive of drug use. Arum added that the Mayweather’s rejection of the $5 million penalty would not in any way derail the May 2 mega bout.

In the past, drug testing was an issue in attempts to make a Pacquiao-Mayweather fight in late 2009 and early 2010. While Mayweather was adamant for random Olympic-style blood and urine testing, Pacquiao objected to some of the protocols. Pacquiao was accused by Mayweather of using performance enhancing drugs, a charge that was vehemently denied by the Filipino. Mayweather was sued by Pacquiao over the allegation and the two settled out of court.

A few days back, the US Anti-Doping Agency announced that Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao had agreed to undergo Olympic-style random drug-testing before the bout. Since 2010, Mayweather has had USADA testing for all of his bouts. The US Anti-Doping Agency will conduct blood and urine tests for drugs including human growth hormone (HGH) and the blood-boosting erythropoietin (EPO) on both fighters.

Travis Tygart, the chief executive of the United States Anti-Doping Agency, said a positive test would kill the fight, where the total purse is likely to be more than $200 million. A positive test would subject the fighter who tested positive to a potential career-ending ban of four years from competition. Tygart said the penalty for the fighter who violates it is going to be a lot higher than $5 million if there is a positive test prior to the fight. The USADA Chief also remarked Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao signed on to the sanctioning process that is clearly spelled out and added it is a contract that would be enforceable against them.

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