Once billed as the ‘The Baddest Man on the Planet’, Mike Tyson was one of the most feared boxers of his era. He would step into the ring without the need for an over the top costume or entrance music and yet strike terror at the heart of his opponents.
— British Boxing (@britishboxers) March 2, 2020
The 53-year-old, now a former-undisputed heavyweight champion, demonstrated very little emotion in his prime as he went on to become the youngest heavyweight champion of all time, knocking out Trevor Berbick for the WBC title at age 19 in 1986.
However, his career decline began with an 11th-round knockout loss to Evander Holyfield later that year – just the second of his career. From thereon, Tyson would only win five of his final 11 fights, before retiring in 2005.
Now at aged 53, life is way more different for ‘Iron Mike’.
In a highly emotional interview with fellow great Sugar Ray Leonard (a 1976 Olympic gold medalist and former five-weight world champion as a pro) on his Hotboxin’ podcast, Tyson broke down in tears when the two discussed their respective retirements from the ring.
👀This n!gga mike got a Cold blooded killer in side of him. a lot of fighters don’t have that. ain’t nothing soft about him, he would have been catching body’s if it wasn’t for boxing. #abcforlife #starzgettheapp 🍾#Theking 🥃#bransoncognac pic.twitter.com/qVg2DNeWHd
— 50cent (@50cent) March 3, 2020
Tyson admitted his transition from boxer to spectator left him feeling ’empty’ as a human being.
“I’m a f***ing student of war,” Tyson told Leonard. “That’s why I’m so feared, that’s why they feared me when I was in the ring. I was an annihilator – it’s all I was born for. Now those days are gone.
“It’s empty, I’m nothing. I’m working on the art of humbleness.
“That’s the reason I’m crying, because I’m not that person no more and I miss him.”
Mike Tyson in tears reflecting on his days as the baddest man on the planet.
“The reason why I’m crying is cuz I’m not that person no more”pic.twitter.com/AKmU6LyRK7
— MMA History Today (@MMAHistoryToday) March 2, 2020
Tyson, who was disqualified from a fight in 1997 after he bit a chunk out of Evander Holyfield’s right ear, said he is fearful of his old self.
“‘Cause sometimes I feel like a b—-,” he said on his podcast. “Because I don’t want that person to come out, ’cause if he comes out, hell is coming with him.”
“And it’s not funny at all,” he said. “It’s not cool, like, I’m a tough guy. It’s just that I hate that guy. I’m scared of him.”
Watch Tyson’s emotional interview right here:
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