By Jake Donovan
You know the times are changing when even Bob Arum thinks enough is enough.
The past several weeks have seen a significant change in the 80-year old Hall of Fame promoter. Perhaps it was the shakeup of his biggest draw, Manny Pacquiao landing on the wrong end of the year’s most talked about judging controversy which gave Tim Bradley the biggest win of his career.
Or maybe after more than four decades in the sport, Arum and his Top Rank company are ready to try something new.
Two weeks ago, Arum openly threw his support behind Nonito Donaire’s decision to subject himself to random drug testing every day for the rest of his boxing career. The stance was a far cry from past insistence that whatever drug testing is ordered by the governing state commission is good enough.
Late last week during an appearance on Fox News’ ‘On The Record’, Arum stated his belief that the sport – at least as it pertains to the U.S. boxing scene – would be better off with a federal commission.
The endorsement came shortly after explaining the details behind the ongoing investigation of the scoring in Bradley-Pacquiao, which has perhaps softened his stance on the topic of one governing body overseeing the sport in the United States.
However, Arum’s approval wasn’t completely unbridled, even in offering confidence that the Senators involved – Harry Reid, from Arum’s Nevada home state, and former Presidential candidate John McCain of Arizona – have the sport’s best interests at heart.
“First I have to say that Sen. McCain and Sen. Reid have always supported boxing and have always loved boxing,” Arum stated to ‘On The Record’ correspondent Griff Jenkins during the live segment last Thursday. “Yes, I would be in favor of a federal boxing commission. My word of advice to Sen. McCain is, don’t overregulate. You’re not Barney Frank, you’re John McCain and the bill has a place.
“We need a federal commission. But let’s not overregulate.”
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter at twitter.com/JakeNDaBox or submit questions/comments to [email protected].