You likely know that it has been a long, winding road traveled to get to May 2nd. Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather have had on-again, off-again negotiations for years before finally coming to an agreement earlier this year. They will compete this weekend in Las Vegas, and even that was somewhat in doubt until tickets went on sale last week.
One thing that hasn't been a major focus of the media's attention for this bout has been drug testing. Both men have agreed to full random blood and urine screening and have both been tested multiple times, with the results not being made public. Back in 2009 and 2010 though, this sort of testing was a major contributor to why the fight didn't go down then. Kevin Iole of Yahoo Sports explains:
Pacquiao promoter Bob Arum said all terms had been agreed upon when Mayweather demanded random Olympic-style blood and urine testing to scan for performance enhancing drugs. Arum said he recalls the date as being around Dec. 10, 2009, though he said he isn't certain.
That type of testing was not being done in boxing at the time and Arum said he, trainer Freddie Roach and Pacquiao were ignorant of what it entailed. After much back and forth, Pacquiao ultimately declined to participate in the testing.
"Manny said there had to be a period of time before the fight where they will stop the testing. We negotiated that and we had an agreement on that and Mayweather walked away from it."
That part was well-documented. What slipped through the cracks to a degree was that Pacquiao and Mayweather were actually randomly tested by the Nevada State Athletic Commission during the negotiations.
But Keith Kizer, then the executive director of the Nevada Athletic Commission, didn't give up hope. He ordered surprise urine tests on both men, which were taken on Dec. 30, 2009.
Both men passed the surprise tests, though they did not test blood or perform a carbon isotope ratio test on either man.
Kizer noted in the article that he thought the fight was going to happen so they wanted to get in front of the testing.
It'll be interesting to see if the commission releases the results of the current testing, even if both men pass all the tests. NSAC hasn't had the best track record in MMA lately, so we'll have to see how they handle the most lucrative fight of all time.