Wow, it's been over a year since I last posted something here. I got lazy (though you can't blame me, it's a part of the Castro gene). However, today's news headline that the hand wraps taken from Antonio Margarito contained the elements of Plaster of Paris has awoken me from my doze.
Please follow this link to the LATimes website where the news was first reported.
What would I like to see come down as punishment? Well, if history is to be repeated by those who fail to study it, I suggest that both Margarito and his trainer, Javier Capetillo, face a lifetime ban from boxing. This is, of course, the same fate Panama Lewis and Luis Resto faced when they were caught using Plaster of Paris in 1983. That Margarito never inflicted any damage with this plaster is the only valid argument to not ban him for life. However, I believe that he was both ready and willing to use the foreign substance against Shane Mosley the night it was discovered in his hand wraps. As such, I see no excuse on his or Capetillo's part as to not knowing it was there. An example needs to be made of this situation so that boxers and trainers will never want to do this again. The life of another boxer might well be in jeopardy if loaded gloves are used in a professional fight.
The public may never know if Team Margarito had used this in past fights, either. I think that boxing commissions (beginning with the Nevada State Athletic Comission) should pass regulations requiring that a fighters gloves and hand wraps be removed by or in front of State officials and then kept for one year in case there are allegations of impropriety. This would definitely make fighters and trainers think twice about cheating with their gloves or wraps and can all be done in the name of safety. Will they step up?