The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency has issued a statement disputing the claims made in an SB Nation report that Floyd Mayweather received a banned intravenous vitamin injection before his May 2 fight against Manny Pacquiao.
In a statement issued Thursday, USADA said the report contained “numerous unfounded and false accusations” about its testing protocols. In addition to the claims about Mayweather, the story by SB Nation’s Thomas Hauser raised larger questions about drug testing in boxing.
According to the report, Mayweather was administered an IV of vitamin-saline solution the day before his fight. While the injection did not include any banned substances, IVs are still banned under WADA guidelines because they can be used to “dilute or mask the presence of another substance,” Hauser explained.
Hauser reported, citing a letter sent from USADA to the Nevada State Athletic Commission, that Mayweather applied for, and was granted, a therapeutic use exemption for his IV nearly three weeks after the bout. USADA said in its statement that “Mayweather did disclose the infusion to USADA in advance of the IV being administered to him,” but did not say whether it had received an official application for a TUE prior to the infusion.
“I did not commit any violations of the Nevada or USADA drug testing guidelines,” Mayweather said in a statement. “I follow and have always followed the rules of Nevada and USADA, the gold standard of drug testing.”
Drug testing guidelines were a major hurdle to arranging the much-anticipated Mayweather-Pacquiao fight. The two fighters’ camps spent the better part of a decade negotiating the terms of a potential bout, with drug testing as a main sticking point. Sports Illustrated’s Greg Bishop detailed the terms of the testing program in an April story.
- Dan Gartland