The ex-coach of Mike Tyson – Teddy Atlas – has admitted wronging the heavyweight champion after the pair buried the hatchet following 30 years of silence.
Atlas and Tyson didn’t speak from the early 1980s to 2013 on the back of a disagreement while the latter was training under the former’s guidance with Cus D’Amato.
Once they finally did squash the beef when Tyson apologized to Atlas at a Turning Stone Casino event in Verona, New York, they stayed in touch.
But soon after, Atlas did something he now regrets.
“I will tell you something I did wrong the next day after he apologized. He was waiting for me when I came down to check out in the lobby.
“Mike came up to me, and we were talking for a minute, and as we were walking, he was rubbing my back, and it felt like he wanted to show his sincerity that he was telling you the truth and that it meant something,” explained Atlas on his ‘The Fight With’ podcast.
“So we exchanged phone numbers, and he asked me to call him. But here’s where I did something wrong.
“I remember calling him, and instead of just saying, ‘Hi, what’s up.’ I called him to invite him to my charity foundation dinner – which means a lot to me.
“We need to have these celebrities to raise money for charity.
“I regret it. Because it came off like, ‘Come to my dinner because you can help me make money.’
“He was like, ‘Well, why don’t we talk first. Why don’t we meet up first, and he was right.
MIKE TYSON APOLOGY
“I think he thought that I was using him. I make no apologies for that because it was for the cause. But it doesn’t mean it feels right to that person after everything he had to go through to say what he said to me (in the apology).
“I understand what he felt, and I don’t blame him,” he added.
All is good with Atlas and Tyson now, as the pair are on good terms. Tyson regularly gets a mention on the Atlas podcast, as several tales from their time together are featured.
It’s well worth a listen, not just for that, but for Atlas’ fantastic knowledge of the sport.