Sun23Nov2014

Edwin Rodriguez: Andre Ward has refused VADA drug testing

12th November 2013
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On November 16th, at the Citizens Bank Arena in Ontario, California, undefeated Super Middleweight contender Edwin "La Bomba" Rodriguez (24-0, 16 KOs) will take his first step in achieving boxing immortality when he challenges incumbent title holder Andre "S.O.G." Ward (for his Super WBA 168 pound championship.

In this revealing and intimate video featurette, Edwin Rodriguez, legendary trainer Ronnie Shields, and expert conditioning coach Danny Arnold discuss the Super Middleweight title challenger's preparation for the highly anticipated championship contest.

"The Plex Gym" triumvirate also examines the controversial topic of pre fight drug testing for this crucial bout, and why only one November 16th combatant decided to participate in the VADA "24/7/365" random drug testing program.

"Andre has stated that he's not opposed to VADA pre-fight screening, but still hasn't gone through with the program," claims Edwin Rodriguez. "Why? I could understand if he had to pay for it out of his own pocket, because it is quite expensive. But our sponsor is willing to pay for Andre's testing as well. I'm taking a stand for the good of the sport, and I'm really disappointed that Andre has only taken a verbal stand and hasn't followed through with his actions."

Admittedly, Edwin Rodriguez doesn't believe Andre Ward to be a "dirty" fighter. But the 28 year old title challenger does feel strongly about ensuring a level playing field.

"I'm not saying that he's currently using any kind of performance enhancing drug. I think Andre is a great champion and one of the best representatives of the sport. But I just find it very odd that a fighter like Andre Ward wouldn't want to go through with the VADA administered drug testing before such a big fight. This kind of drug testing ensures absolute fairness in the ring. This isn't baseball or basketball. This is a dangerous sport in which we hit each other repeatedly to the body and head. I just want to make certain that I'm involved in a clean sport, and I'm taking a stand to promote fairness in boxing. I would like to think that Andre feels just as strongly about this issue and is willing to take this stand as well."

"Andre Ward vs. Edwin Rodriguez" Super WBA World Championship contest is slated to take place on Saturday, November 16th, at the Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario, California with doors opening at 3:00 PM PT and the first non-televised 3:15 PM PT.

"Ward vs. Rodriguez" will be televised live on HBO® World Championship Boxing at 10:00 ET/PT.

The special event is promoted by Goossen Tutor Promotions in association with SOG Promotions and sponsored by Toyota Vayamos Juntos, Morongo Casino Resort & Spa, and the City of Ontario. The "Ward vs. Rodriguez" Championship fight is presented in association with DiBella Entertainment.

Tickets priced at $200, $125, $75, $50 and $25 are available at Citizens Business Bank Arena Box Office or online at AXS.com or by calling AXS at 888-929-7849.

Ward v Rodriguez is live in the UK on BoxNation. Click BoxNation to subscribe.

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