Nevada to Margarito: Apply first in California |

Nevada to Margarito: Apply first in California

Ken Ritter, The Associated Press

LAS VEGAS – Former welterweight champion Antonio Margarito must answer to the California Athletic Commission for a hand-wrapping scandal before he’ll be licensed to fight in Las Vegas.

The Nevada State Athletic Commission voted 4-1 on Friday to table Margarito’s request for a boxing license. The 32-year-old Margarito had been considered a possible opponent for pound-for-pound king Manny Pacquiao if his fight against Floyd Mayweather Jr. falls through.

“He has to go California to apply,” Nevada commission executive Keith Kizer said.

Kizer said a Nevada license doesn’t necessarily hinge on Margarito’s reinstatement in California, but commissioners told Margarito he should apply there first.

Margarito was suspended for at least a year in California after an illegal plaster-like substance was found in his hand wraps before a January 2009 bout against Shane Mosley at Staples Center in Los Angeles. Margarito’s hands were rewrapped and he lost the fight and his WBA title.

Margarito claimed he knew nothing about the illegal wraps and blamed trainer Javier Capetillo, whom he fired. Capetillo was also suspended in California.

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Margarito is 38-6 with 27 knockouts, after returning to the ring for the first time in 15 months on May 8. He won a unanimous decision over Roberto Garcia in Aguascalientes, Mexico.

Margarito is originally from Torrance, Calif. He now lives in Tijuana, Mexico.