Roach doesn’t accept apology from opponent

Associated Press


Antonio Margarito has repeatedly said he is sorry for a hand-wrapping scandal that almost ended his boxing career. Now his camp has had to apologize again, for something else only days before getting into the ring against Manny Pacquiao.

A video interview posted by Elie Seckbach of FanHouse recently raced across the Internet, in which Margarito and Brandon Rios — both of whom are trained by Robert Garcia — appear to mock the Parkinson’s disease of Pacquiao trainer Freddie Roach.

Before even talking about the junior middleweight title bout during a news conference Wednesday at Cowboys Stadium, Garcia first apologized for the video.

“This was nothing to do with the disease that Freddie Roach has. We know it’s something that we don’t wish nobody,” Garcia said Wednesday. “It’s something personal, something between Team Pacquiao and Team Margarito. I just wanted to make that clear.”

When Roach was at the podium a few minutes later, he didn’t acknowledge what Garcia said or even refer to the video. After the formal program was completed, though, Roach said he wasn’t buying Garcia’s apology.

In the video, Margarito makes a twisted face and raises a shaking hand for the camera before it pans to Rios, who also makes faces and stutters while saying Pacquiao’s name.

The video has since been edited to remove Rios and make it appear as though Margarito is doing a scared impression of Roach, who has routinely questioned Margarito’s integrity following the hand-wrapping scandal nearly two years ago.

Garcia also takes part in the mockery by holding up a thick chunk of metal and telling Roach he’d better watch as Margarito’s hands are wrapped so that it doesn’t end up under the tape.

“They’re so disrespectful to me and the hand pad issues. ... It’s like a slap in the face, like ‘we got caught with something, but we’re still here fighting. ’ I think it shows his true character. I don’t think they are a good group of people,” Roach said.

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