F California boxing officials deny new license for Antonio Margarito - Powcast Sports

California boxing officials deny new license for Antonio Margarito

source: http://www.latimes.com/sports

Board blocks his bid, saying he hasn't shown responsibility and lied about plaster in hand wraps before Shane Mosley fight. Margarito can apply elsewhere ahead of planned bout with Manny Pacquiao.

Former welterweight champion Antonio Margarito pleaded his case before the California State Athletic Commission on Wednesday but was denied a new boxing license after commissioners said he failed to show enough responsibility for nearly taking plaster-covered inserts into the ring last year in his title loss to Shane Mosley at Staples Center.

The commission voted 5 to 1 against Margarito's bid to be re-licensed. A state attorney also blasted Margarito for "lying" about his knowledge of the loaded hand wraps that were confiscated before his technical knockout loss to Mosley.

Margarito hoped to get approval from California to help go ahead with his planned fight against Manny Pacquiao for a vacant world super-welterweight belt Nov. 13 in Texas.

However, Margarito is free to apply to other states immediately for a boxing license, and his promoter Bob Arum said Margarito will file an application with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation by Thursday morning.

A boxing source told The Times this week plans are in place for the lucrative Pacquiao-Margarito fight to go ahead at Cowboys Stadium outside Dallas, where more than 50,000 fans came to a Pacquiao bout against Joshua Clottey in March.

In February 2009, the California commission revoked the licenses of Margarito and his trainer Javier Capetillo. Federal boxing bylaws prevented him from fighting in other states for a year.

"We asked [Margarito] to go back to California before he went anywhere else," said Greg Sirb, vice president of the Assn. of Boxing Commissions, a national body that interprets rules for state commissions. "The other commissions can now consider that. He did what he was required to do."

During the six-hour hearing Wednesday in Los Angeles, athletic commissioners grilled Margarito to answer if his rehabilitation was genuine, and even questioned him for training in California this year without a sparring permit.

"What's so disheartening is that [Margarito] has been given every chance to come forward to give the truth," California assistant attorney general Karen Chappelle told the commission. "[He] has demonstrated no remorse for the potential harm to his opponent."

Chappelle added it would be "foolhardy [to] trust the safety of other boxers to his whim," claiming that Margarito was "willing to cover up his professional shortcomings" by trying to use loaded gloves.

At the hearing, Margarito repeated that his since-fired trainer Capetillo tucked the plaster inserts into the hand wraps without his knowledge. Margarito said he has since asked Capetillo why he did so, and was told, "Don't ask me that."

"All I can do is be honest," Margarito said after the hearing. "It's their decision."

Commissioners Steve Alexander, Gene Hernandez, DeWayne Zinkin, Van Lemons and Dr. Chris Giza voted to deny Margarito's license request. Commission chair John Frierson, saying he thought Margarito was sincere, cast the dissenting vote.

One commissioner said it would set the wrong precedent to let a boxer in a million-dollar fight to be tempted to cheat if he knew the cost was only an 18-month suspension.

"The boxer is in charge of his team. He needs to know the rules. If he's not sure, he needs to seek out answers," commission executive officer George Dodd said. "It's easy for a boxer to have plausible deniability. This ruling makes a boxer responsible for every aspect of the fighting game."


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