Three-time world heavyweight champion Mike Tyson has admitted that his days of being “the baddest man on the planet” are far behind him now as he is much more content on taking care of his family and racing his pigeons than using his alter-ego to intimidate people.
The 45 year-old turned up at the premier of his new film – The Hangover II (credited as Mike Tyson) earlier this year looking a shadow of his former self as he had shed pounds in weight and looked his slimmest ever on the red carpet.
The man who famously bit off a chunk of Evander Holyfield’s ear in 1997, even explained that his title belts mean nothing to him anymore and doesn’t miss the sport that made him a star.
“I have my wife and my kids,” Tyson told TV network CBS.
“I had all the pleasures you could ever give me and still it doesn’t match up to my ankle compared to my wife and my children. And they like me and respect me, a little bit at least. So it can’t even compare to that. It can’t. Not even a little bit.”
Tyson was also asked what his title belts mean to him now, to which he replied, “This is garbage. I can say I bled for garbage.
“At one time it meant a lot – when you’re just a young kid, this is everything to you.
“But then you realise your priorities change. And you just want your children to be happy and do nice things and that makes you happy. This stuff is nothing. This is just nothing, man.”
The New Yorker, who once told top heavyweight Lennox Lewis that he wanted to “eat his children” has mellowed in his time away from the boxing ring and went on to re-iterate his continued desire to keep the old “Iron Mike” persona away from his happy family life with his wife and children.
“I can’t handle being that guy,” Tyson explained.
“You know, that guy’s a creation. ‘Iron Mike,’ the baddest man on the planet. There’s nobody like that. People like that don’t exist. I just had the audacity, the idiocy, to say it.”