Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr. have enjoyed a wave of publicity over a proposed ‘legends’ exhibition fight in November. The signs are beginning to show that this is all the furor may be.
Since they announced their intention to fight over the summer, when boxing fans were craving any event, Tyson vs. Jones has gone through several alterations.
Firstly, they pushed the whole Pay-Per-View back by two and a half months before a row opened up over the paychecks. Jones wanted compensation for waiting. In the end, the pair of former heavyweight champions worked it out.
But not only what’s gone on in the public eye is effecting the show. A brush with the law for a YouTuber scheduled to appear on the bill threatened a significant portion of interest.
Having a video presenter on the bill is seen as essential these days due to the lack of interest in boxing from the younger TikTok generation.
Therefore, Tyson has been condensing his training camp into mini-clips. Tiny segments which are certainly netting the ‘Baddest Man on the Planet’ millions of dollars.
This fact is planting seeds of serious doubt among those in boxing circles. It’s believed, and something WBN agrees with, that Tyson could be banking as much as possible from those 30-second videos before the Jones fight goes ahead.
Tyson himself admitted in a recent interview that he couldn’t even do those videos at the age of 54 without experiencing severe pain afterward.
“I did that video, and I was in bed for a week. It was 30 seconds, and I was in bed for a week,” Tyson told Joe Rogan on his podcast. “It made me realize that this is big boy s—.
“Getting in shape and getting in condition are two different animals. They don’t even belong in the same vision of working out.
“Getting in shape is being able to fit your clothes. Getting in the condition is being able to come outside of your soul. You can’t do that automatically.
“The emotional state to prepare for that is mind-boggling.”
Whether Tyson can get in the kind of shape needed in his mid-fifties even to go six rounds has gone up for debate.
It’s highly likely that the New Yorker will have to pace himself for the first minute of every round or even consider dropping from three minutes to two for the contest.
Lots of discussions. Tyson also added to those musings with his comments to Rogan about his opponent selection.
“It went from him to another guy to another guy in MMA, then another fighter. Then it was Evander, and it was just a bunch of guys,” said Tyson.
Then the next thing you know, it came down to Roy. I was like I didn’t know what the hell was going on.
“Next thing you know, he signed the contract, and I signed the contract.
“Next thing you know, I’m in the gym again, and it’s disastrous. Now I’m saying to myself, did I do this s—?”
Unfazed, Tyson will be plowing forward with attempts to start a league of bouts for those of a certain age. What happens when one of them gets injured for real, though due to participation?
None-the-less, it’s Mike Tyson’s vision.
“It’s going to be awesome. We’re going to start up the legends only league, and it’s going to be breathtaking.”
The views expressed in this article are that of the Editor, Phil Jay. Auxiliary member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay