Brandon Rios tested positive for a banned substance following his Nov. 23 loss to Manny Pacquiao in Macau, but vehemently denied taking any illegal substances in a 20-minute telephone conversation with Yahoo Sports on Friday.
In a story first reported by RingTV.com, Rios tested positive for dimenthylamylamine in his post-fight urinalysis. Rios lost a wide unanimous decision to Pacquiao in the welterweight bout at the Venetian Macao.
Pacquiao and Rios were randomly tested by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association (VADA). Pacquiao passed all tests given by VADA. Rios passed the first four but failed the final test.
Dimenthylamylamine, commonly known as DMAA, is a stimulant banned by both VADA and the World Anti-Doping Agency.
It is found in the over-the-counter fitness supplement Jack3d. Rios said he took Jack3d many years ago when he was starting his career, but said his trainer, Robert Garcia, told him he did not need it and to stop taking it. He said he never took it again.
In April, the Food & Drug Administration warned consumers about taking DMAA. It said that as of April 11, it had received 86 reports of illness or death associated with supplements containing DMAA.
According to the warning on the FDA's website, DMAA is "most commonly used in supplements promising weight loss, muscle building and performance enhancement; it can elevate blood pressure and could lead to cardiovascular problems, including heart attack, shortness of breath and tightening of the chest."
Rios was adamant that he never took anything that is banned, and he said he asked questions of conditioning coach Alex Ariza before ingesting anything he did not know.
"Like I told you man, I know I'm not dirty; I'm not a dirty fighter," Rios said. "If they want to test me 24-7, day and night, day and night, they could test me all they want. I know I don't take no steroids. I don't take no drugs. I don't take no diet supplements or [expletive] like that. The way I fight, I'm all natural. I'm a strong [expletive].
"I take a punch very well. When I lose weight ... this is the first time I've lost weight the right way. I followed a diet plan and I had an actual nutritionist."
Rios questioned the collection procedures of the final test, which came after the fight. Following the fight, he had to give two samples. The first went to the Chinese boxing commission, and he did that in his locker room. But he said after urinating the first time, he had nothing left to give for the VADA collector who came in later.
A collector for VADA followed him to his room, he said. But Rios said the collector, whom he did not know and described as "I think maybe a Russian guy" was not prepared to properly collect his urine.
Dr. Margaret Goodman, who founded VADA, said via email she was unable to speak to a reporter. However, she wrote VADA used IDTM, a highly recognized collection agency, to take Rios' samples when he was in Macau.
But Rios said things weren't right with the final test. The collector did not bring a sealed collection kit with him to his suite, Rios said. Normally, he said, when VADA wanted to collect a sample from him, the agent had him choose a sealed collection kit. That kit contained a container to urinate in and two bottles, one which was to be used as the A sample and the second that was the B sample. Rios was to urinate in the large container, then move part of it into the A bottle and part into the B bottle.
But he said the collector who came to his room after the fight wasn't prepared and didn't have a kit. Rios said he was drinking water in order to be able to urinate, and then suddenly had to do so. When he couldn't wait any longer, Rios said the collector told him to urinate in a glass that was in the room.
More than 20 minutes later, he said, a kit was delivered to his room and in front of the agent, Rios transferred the urine from the glass to the cup and into the two bottles he removed from the kit.
"This time, he had me [urinate] in a regular glass, and a lot of [expletives] touched [it]," Rios said. "A lot of people touched that [glass] and put [expletive] in it. They just washed it with dish wash, or whatever they do it with. That's why I'm suspicious, because they had me [urinate] in a regular [glass], not one of the containers like they always had me do before.
"I had to wait 20 minutes [for someone to bring a sealed collection kit] and my [urine] wasn't even warm no more. It was cold."
He was also wary of the positive test because the sample he gave to the representative for the Chinese commission in the locker room did not test positive.
Additionally, Rios said he was suspicious that after passing numerous tests, he failed a test only after an incident between Alex Ariza, his conditioning coach, and Pacquiao trainer Freddie Roach had occurred earlier in the week.
Asked if he thought someone on Team Pacquiao had something to do with the positive test, he said, "I'm not going to sit here and point and blame nobody." But he said he found it odd the positive test came after the incident.
"I passed all of those other tests and all of a sudden, the last time, the last one, after we had that incident, then that's when we tested positive," Rios said.
Top Rank president Todd duBoef said he was aware of the positive test, but had little to say.
"There is not much I can say because I don't know a lot about it, but it is very disappointing to hear of this," duBoef said.
The sanctioning body, the WBO, served as the commission for the bout in China, so it is unclear if it can penalize Rios for failing the post-fight test. Tim Lueckenhoff, the president of the Association of Boxing Commissions, did not immediately return a message seeking comment.