Berto's Trainer Wants Drug Testing For Ortiz Rematch
By Chris Robinson
“We will be testing. From what I’m told and as far as I’m concerned, we definitely will be testing.” – Andre Berto’s trainer Tony Morgan on the forthcoming rematch with Victor Ortiz
On Tuesday night I spoke with trainer Tony Morgan, known best for his work with former champion Andre Berto. I was curious as to Morgan’s take on the recent news surrounding a possible rematch between Berto and Victor Ortiz, and whether random drug testing would play a role in the fight.
Berto suffered his first and only loss as a professional on April 16th when he traded knockdowns with Ortiz in a wild slugfest at the Foxwood Resort in Mashantucket, Connecticut, dropping a decision after twelve chaotic rounds. The defeat stung Berto so badly that he practically went into hiding for a few weeks after, eventually rising to the surface to show how much desire he had at getting his revenge on his conqueror.
Ortiz would end up being stopped in the fourth round of his following fight to Floyd Mayweather Jr. when he was caught unsuspectingly with a left-right combination that had him down and out at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Following the loss, Berto’s promoter Lou Dibella made clear that if a rematch between Ortiz and his fighter were to happen, that Olympic-style drug testing would have to be included.
A recent BoxingScene.com piece by Jake Donovan seemed to state otherwise, as Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer, who promotes Ortiz, stated that the aforementioned testing was not part of the deal. Morgan was surprised to hear as much, as he adamantly stated his belief that testing will indeed be included in the rematch according to everything he has been hearing.
But Morgan wasn’t done just yet.
A simple phone call with the intention of volleying a few questions surrounding the fight soon turned into an in-depth look at Morgan’s perspective on the use of performance-enhancing drugs in boxing and his concern on how the sport could be negatively impacted in the future.
Along the way Morgan revealed how his newfound working relationship with BALCO founder Victor Conte taught him a great deal and also spoke with curiosity towards Juan Manuel Marquez’s new strength and conditioning coach Angel Hernandez, an admitted steroid dealer in recent times. Marquez looked excellent on November 12th in another close battle with Manny Pacquiao after moving up in weight but two years earlier when he rose two divisions to face Floyd Mayweather Jr. he was far less effective and his body didn’t look nearly as solid.
Ultimately Morgan is just looking out for the safety of his fighter and you can tell from speaking with him just how much distress this issue has caused him.
Continue reading for all of Morgan’s thoughts…
I know it’s out there…
“I just think that will all the crap that is going on, I don’t want to point fingers, I don’t want to say names [but] I know it’s out there. Can I say anybody’s doing it? No. But I’m not going to throw my kid in there and take a chance unless I know. I’m not saying that anybody’s on it, I just don’t trust anybody anymore. When it gets to tens, to hundreds, to millions of dollars, people are going to do whatever they can to be on top of their game.”
Taking no chances…
“Do I think Victor [Ortiz] used? I don’t know but if he did, I want to know. We’re just not going to take chances and I think everybody should test. Because these tests, the tests that they do in the commissions, you can get away with anything. And I never knew that because we always played by the rules. But when you talk to these other people, oh my God, there’s so much stuff you can get away with. It’s just the ignorance of the sport and people not knowing.”
Working ten times harder…
“As hard as people are working to test the drugs, the drug-makers and the dirty guys, they’re working ten times as hard to produce something you can’t test. Look at HGH. Now they say they can test for it; I still don’t know if they can test for it. That was supposedly a huge deal in baseball and everything else. But those things, a lot of things come in and out of your system so there’s nothing to test for it. And you’re testing urine, but half the sh!t can’t even be found in urine.”
Learning from BALCO founder Victor Conte, who worked with Berto for his camp prior to his September 3rd victory over Jean Zaveck…
“Here’s the thing, you have to get with somebody who really, really knows both sides. Victor Conte. Go out and have a sit-down talk with that guy. That guy, to me, is one of the most intelligent men when it comes to human bodies, nutrition, supplements, everything. He knows everything. He knows all the good, all the bad, all the ugly. He knows everything. That’s who you want to learn from. Because he did all the tricks. He was on the wrong side for a long time and he will tell ya that. But he knows everything in the book. He opened our eyes to a lot.”
An even playing field…
“Listen, I don’t know if anybody is. All I know is that if my guy is stepping in the ring, I want the other guy tested. And for the safety sake of him, so he feels well, I want my guy tested too. So he knows it’s an even playing ground. A fair, even playing ground.”
Everyone loves a good story...
“You hear it all over. All over. People talk and everyone loves a good story. Especially newspapers, writers. They love the dirt. And that’s probably what’s half-wrong with our society today. They’ll write about the good and they’ll write too much about the bad. But it is what it is. It’s like when there’s a car wreck. You don’t want to look over but something just draws you to it. You still look, you still want to see what it is and it’s sad. Because some of these guys, like Berto, I know for a fact, we didn’t even use supplements all the way coming up in the pros, the Olympics, we were scared of anything because we didn’t know.”
The sport has enough black eyes…
“It’s scary. We don’t know if [Antonio] Margarito cheated with Miguel Cotto. We’ll never know that. The only person that knows that, is Antonio Margarito and his people. But to me, Miguel Cotto was a phenomenal fighter. Maybe the best of the best. And look what happened to him. Did he get cheated? We don’t know that for sure. But, look what happened not too long after that. And you always wonder, why did it take this guy five or six rounds to get going? It’s sad, because our sport has enough black eyes. It’s sad because this sport needs good news, good people, but it’s just sad because it never seems to end. And I have a feeling that maybe this is just a calm before the storm. I have a feeling something big is going to happen. I have a feeling.”
The motivation of money…
“What other sport in the world makes money like this? None. Nowhere else does one person, one fighter, make forty to fifty million a fight. One night. No football player does that. No golfer does that. No basketball player does that.”
Comparing Juan Manuel Marquez’s recent effort against Manny Pacquiao to his performance against Floyd Mayweather in September of 2009 and his thoughts on Marquez’s strength coach Angel Hernandez…
“I saw it, I watched it. I study a lot of tape and that tape was one of them. I thought Marquez looked like a totally different person. But could that be from being great? Yeah, it could be. I’m not saying he cheated. But when you have a guy who has a tainted record, and they didn’t do actual testing, and it was even brought up, and Freddie [Roach] said ‘Oh, we’re not really bothered by that’. And true, it is a distraction, but at the same note, sometimes it’s necessary. You know, I think that if they played by the rules, I think your boy did a hell of a job. If they didn’t, then he should be out of the sport. I don’t think he should be allowed to be in the sport.”
maybe berto is asking for drug testing so he can see if contes new steroids are as good as his proteges that worked for marquez !!!!Comment by goldenbear on 12-01-2011
Ortiz body looked totally different against Berto vs Floyd. I've never seen Ortiz looked that ripped and moving up in weight come on............Comment by Shogunofharlem1 on 12-01-2011
Berto needs to put his chin under testing. It isnt glass but its damn sure close.Comment by komandante on 12-01-2011
Juan Manuel Marquez is a suspect....:peeright:Comment by TracianWarrior on 12-01-2011
no need for Drug Testing, Victor Ortiz will Knock you Out again.. lolPost a Comment - View More User Comments (22)