So it begins - Mike Tyson will travel the world - Korea, China, Russia, South Africa, and many other countries, putting on a series of four-round exhibition bouts for everyone to see…
“We are giving the public all over the world a chance to watch him box again,” promoter Sterling McPherson said of Tyson.
Is that really what this tour is about? Technically, yes - Tyson will give everyone a chance to see him step into the ring one more time. What is this really about? This is a world tour designed to put a dent in the millions of dollars of debt that Tyson owes to the IRS and multiple creditors, money that he lavishly wasted while basking in the fruit of his storied career.
He wanted to make the money another way, he wanted to make it the only way he knew how. Danny Williams and Kevin McBride made sure that didn’t happen.
After the loss to McBride, Tyson finally realized it was over…
“I realized I don’t think I have it anymore,” Tyson said. “I don’t got the fightin’ guts I don’t think anymore. ... I just don’t have this in my heart anymore. I’m just fighting to take care of my bills, basically. I don’t have the stomach for this kind of thing no more. I don’t have that ferocity. I’m not an animal anymore. Most likely I’m not gonna fight again.”
A little over a year later, Tyson is attempting to recover from debt once again, stepping into the ring with former training partner Corey Sanders on Friday night. Will we see the Mike Tyson who became the youngest heavyweight champion in history pick apart Sanders?
“I’m not that Mike Tyson,” he said. “I’m not 20 years old and I’m not going to smash anybody. That tyrannical, psycho guy, he’s not going to appear.”
Don’t think so? One look at a meek Tyson at Thursday’s weigh-ins, smiling, laughing, and embarrased about the fact that he had to take his shirt off in front of everyone lets you know that he’s finally come to grips with how he wants to live.
“I don’t have the desire for boxing anymore,” he said. “I basically don’t care. I’m just in here in life fighting and trying to win. I’m a little desperate,” he quietly admits. “Boxing doesn’t define me, but I’m in dire need to take care of my life.”
Will you be helping Tyson get out of debt and buy the PPV? Millions around the world will, I guarantee it. Why? It’s been 20 years since he dethroned Trevor Berbick and became the youngest champion of all-time, and he’s still the biggest name in boxing.
Tyson has been convicted with rape, served time in jail, ripped off human flesh with teeth, threatened to eat children, been knocked out, bankrupt, and called every name in the book because of his behavior.
At one time, Mike Tyson was most likely the most popular professional athlete in the world. Now - he’s down to nothing, he’s a disgrace, one of the reasons why boxing is so corrupt today.
Thousands of sportswriters have written off Tyson before, called him a waste of time, a freak show, told the public that they would never bother with him again.
Yet once again, Tyson is the topic of their latest article…