Floyd Mayweather Jr.'s camp seems willing to compromise on the strict… (Isaac Brekken / Associated…)
The promoter for unbeaten boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. told The Times on Saturday that he'd be willing to compromise on U.S. Anti-Doping Agency policy that would leave Mayweather and his tentatively scheduled March 13 opponent, Manny Pacquiao, subject to a blood test on the eve of their mega-fight.
"As long as there's a blood test, as long as there's a urine test and as long as it's random, a [specified] cutoff date is agreeable to us," Mayweather promoter Richard Schaefer said. "We're saying, 'We're OK,' and we hope Pacquiao [and his promoter and trainer] are OK."
Schaefer didn't precisely spell out how the drug testing would be done. He and USADA Chief Executive Travis Tygart have said they don't believe an effective anti-doping policy can be carried out if Pacquiao won't agree to test any time in the 30-day period before the fight. Schaefer pointed to Pacquiao trainer Freddie Roach's comments to The Times last week that a blood test three days before the bout seems reasonable.
Pacquiao first told The Times on Christmas Eve that he planned to sue Mayweather and Schaefer's Golden Boy Promotions for defamation because of their intense public push for testing beyond that required by the Nevada State Athletic Commission.
"They're trying to tarnish, damage and destroy the clean reputation of someone who is a fighter, a warrior," Pacquiao advisor and biographer Winchell Campos told The Times on Saturday. "Manny has said he fights for his country, his honor and his God, and he'd never do anything to disgrace any of those."
That said, Campos said Pacquiao is willing to consider any direction from the Nevada State Athletic Commission. If Nevada authorities agree that additional blood testing beyond their urine collection is appropriate for this high-profile bout that could be the most lucrative in history, "then that's fair," Campos said. "But nobody should be dictating those things to the commission."
Schaefer said he's "never accused Pacquiao of doing something illegal" and added that as a promoter who has more than 20% of Pacquiao's rights, "the last thing I'd want is to see him accused or be found guilty of using steroids."
-- Lance Pugmire PRO FOOTBALL
Rams' Bulger on injured reserve
Quarterback Marc Bulger has become the 13th St. Louis Rams player to be put on injured reserve.
The 1-13 Rams have had little hope for weeks that Bulger could return from a broken left shinbone before the end of the season, and Bulger was still working his way off crutches during the practice week heading into today's game at Arizona.
The Rams will go with either rookie Keith Null or Kyle Boller against the Cardinals. Null has started the last two games.
Chicago Bears receiver Devin Hester is questionable to return Monday against the Minnesota Vikings after missing two games because of a strained left calf. . . . The Buffalo Bills said slot receiver Josh Reed would not play in today's game at the Atlanta Falcons. Reed did not travel with the team to Atlanta because of an ankle injury. . . . Carolina Panthers reserve running back Tyrell Sutton won't play against the New York Giants today because of a calf injury. . . . The Kansas City Chiefs have put safety DaJuan Morgan and linebacker Justin Rogers on injured reserve.
League-leading Chelsea ties, 0-0
Chelsea missed the chance to extend its lead to seven points in the English Premier League when it was held to a scoreless tie at Birmingham.
Chelsea failed to capitalize on a handful of second-half chances and has won only one of its last five league matches -- that with a late penalty against last-place Portsmouth.
"It is not a good result for us," Chelsea Coach Carlo Ancelotti said.
"We are disappointed with the result but not for the performance of the team. We played well."
The Blues lead defending champion Manchester United by five points. Manchester City beat Stoke, 2-0, to close on fifth-place Tottenham, which tied 0-0 at Fulham. West Ham beat Portsmouth 2-0 to climb out of the relegation zone.
United plays Hull today, and third-place Arsenal plays host to fourth-place Aston Villa.
Diego Buonanotte, a 21-year-old midfielder for River Plate in the Argentine league, has been hospitalized with broken bones and other serious injuries after a car accident that killed three male passengers.
Buonanotte, reportedly a transfer target of Sunderland in the Premier League, lost control of his car in the rain and slammed into a tree.
Guardado to sign with Nationals
Veteran left-handed reliever Eddie Guardado and the Washington Nationals have agreed to terms on a minor league deal.
Nationals General Manager Mike Rizzo made the announcement Saturday. Terms were not disclosed.
The 39-year-old Guardado is fourth among active pitchers with 908 appearances in a 17-year career with the Rangers, Twins, Mariners and Reds.
The two-time All-Star has 187 career saves.
St. Cloud State goalie Mike Lee made 13 saves to help the United States open the world junior championship with a 7-3 victory over Slovakia at Saskatoon, Canada.
John Carlson, Jeremy Morin, Derek Stepan, Matt Donovan, Danny Kristo, Jordan Schroeder and Jerry D'Amigo scored for the Americans.