By Keith Idec
NEW YORK – Keith Thurman hasn’t been informed if comprehensive performance-enhancing drug testing will be implemented prior to his fight against Manny Pacquiao.
“Normally there is,” Thurman said following a press conference Tuesday in Manhattan. “I have not been informed on yay or nay. I haven’t heard any details [as] of yet. But I wouldn’t be surprised. I’m used to all forms of testing.”
Thurman won’t object, however, if he and Pacquiao only are subjected to less frequent testing by the Nevada State Athletic Commission. If they agree to terms with the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association, Pacquiao and Thurman would undergo numerous random blood and urine tests before their welterweight title fight July 20 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
“I’m never concerned,” Thurman said. “I’m the guy who says, ‘Let ‘em take whatever the f*** they want.’ Because it does not affect their hands, OK? Now I understand little things, with maybe testosterone levels, because we are men. And men, we live off of testosterone. So, testosterone can do something, as far as maybe a performance-enhancer. But hey man, enhance your performance, baby, because I’m bringing it. You know what I’m saying? I mean, that’s just how I am, man. I can really care less, but I’m always pro-testing. I never go against it and I always participate, so we’ll see what happens.”
The 30-year-old Thurman (29-0, 22 KOs, 1 NC) and the 40-year-old Pacquiao (61-7-2, 39 KOs) will fight for Thurman’s WBA “super” 147-pound championship in their FOX Sports Pay-Per-View main event.
Unlike the WBC, the WBA does not require its champions and challengers to enroll in a stringent testing program. VADA oversees testing for the WBC’s “Clean Boxing Program.”
Following a press conference Wednesday in Beverly Hills, California, Pacquiao will return to the Philippines for the first part of his training camp. He’ll return to California to complete camp at trainer Freddie Roach’s Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood.
Thurman will train in the Tampa-St. Petersburg area, where he resides.
“We normally do it, so they spring it up on me, it doesn’t bother me at all,” Thurman said, referring to testing. “It’s always in all my past fights, so it’s not a big deal.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.