Manny Pacquiao

Manny Pacquiao Fends Off Steroid Accusations

| by Alex Groberman

The web was ablaze on Thursday afternoon after ‘Sugar’ Shane Mosley and Floyd Mayweather Jr. gave a bit of life to a report regarding alleged steroid abuse by Manny Pacquiao. A report, mind you, that probably should have died as quickly as it was created.

This whole mess started on May 3rd when a very shaky and seemingly unreliable article went up on a gambling site and made reference to Pacquiao using steroids. According to the report, a former sparring partner of the Filipino superstar had injected him with some sort of substance leading up to his infamous fight with Oscar De La Hoya.

The reason for Pacquiao’s sudden need to turn to performing enhancing drugs, as per the piece, was because he needed a way to compensate for the size advantage that De La Hoya had on him.

Among the most important notes in the article was that the person who injected Pacquiao, his sparring partner, was Filipino.  

Now, seeing as the report went up on a site that wasn’t especially popular, little really came of it until Mosley mentioned it in one of his tweets. Then his girlfriend mentioned it. Then Mayweather mentioned it. Then Mosley mentioned it again. And thus, a controversy was born.

In response to the tidal wave of attention that the article started attracting after the Mosley and Mayweather tweets, Pacquiao issued the following statement:

An anonymous post on an internet forum claims an unidentified former Filipino sparring partner injected me with steroids before my fight with Oscar de la Hoya and in subsequent fights. This is completely false, totally fabricated, and, not surprisingly, leveled by someone who will not even identify himself. I did not even have a Filipino sparring partner during my training for the fight against De La Hoya or for any fight since then.

I have never taken steroids, HGH, or any banned performance-enhancing drug. Period. My success in the ring is due to hard work, belief in God, and the support of my fans. Like every boxer, I am required to take drug tests in connection with every professional fight in the United States. I have passed every one, including my fight against De la Hoya and my most recent victory against Shane Mosley.

I will fight to protect my hard-earned good name and reputation

Both Kevin Iole of Yahoo Sports and Steve Kim from Mad Boxing have made inquires about these accusations, and both came back with the same conclusion – there have been no known Filipino sparring partners of Pacquiao’s in recent memory who fit the bill.

I’ve always firmly supported Mayweather’s right to challenge Pacquiao’s stance on his drug testing habits. As one half of the two men needed to make their super fight a reality, I think it’s more than fair that the former do everything he feels necessary to ensure that he doesn’t lose his perfect streak to someone who he thinks is cheating the system.

That being said, a boxer making his suspicions known to the public, as Mayweather often does, is one thing. Creating fictional accounts for the sole purpose of slandering a respected champion is a whole different breed of animal. If it is proven that the accusations against Pacquiao are false, which in all likelihood they are given the source, then the Filipino star and his camp should do everything in their power to find out who the person behind this rumor is and prosecute them to their full capabilities.