Former two-weight World Champion, Paulie Malignaggi, has spoken out against the business of boxing not taking anti-doping seriously enough.
Following news that Conor Benn had returned a Voluntary Anti-Doping Agency test with an ‘adverse analytical finding’ of a banned substance, his fight with Chris Eubank Jr has been thrown into doubt. Despite many people, including the British Boxing Board of Control, stating that the event should be cancelled or postponed, those involved are still working for it to go ahead this weekend.
Speaking on his YouTube channel, Malignaggi first addressed the reported substance – clomifene.
“My first take on this is, that’s not a drug that you can take on accident. Now, why it’s banned, I don’t know – a lot of these drugs can be masking agents … they do other things that end up making a situation where they’re performance enhancers, not all performance enhancers are steroids.”
The former Welterweight champ, who hung up the gloves in 2017, went on to criticise the sport in general for its anti-doping procedures, or lack thereof.
“This is a blood sport, and sometimes it literally is life and death. So, I take these things very seriously but I don’t see that may people taking it very seriously – I don’t see the business taking it that seriously.”
“Nobody ever talks about the fact that boxing is the least and most weakest tested professional sport, out of all the major sports in the world. The possibilities of the guys slipping through the cracks and being doped up are probably more likely than in any other sport.”
“If you have a sport full of dopers, what happens? If you’re a fighter, you’re going to dope yourself to protect yourself because if you’re going in clean against a doped up fighter – which more than likely when you reach a certain level you probably are – this isn’t a Rocky movie. That’s in Hollywood, dude. Nobody beats a doped up fighter when they’re clean.”
Finally, Malignaggi addressed whether or not the fight between Benn and Eubank Jr should go ahead on Saturday. Given the information he had at the time of recording, he said no.
“In any other sport, the athlete would be banned or suspended instantly without questions asked, and only in boxing can this failure have happened and people are still talking about maybe there’s a way the fight can still happen … that just goes to show you how much money runs the world.”
“Listen, I don’t think this fight should happen, regardless of anybody’s opinion. You have a failed drug test here, and I hope this fight doesn’t happen. I’m hearing that they’re still trying to make it happen, but we’ll see.”
We expect news today on the status of the bout and, in turn, the event itself.