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Home » Mike Tyson faces Texas sanctioning blow over Jake Paul fight

Mike Tyson faces Texas sanctioning blow over Jake Paul fight

Mike Tyson is unlikely to get sanctioned to face Jake Paul in a professional contest on July 20, World Boxing News understands.

“The Baddest Man on the Planet” aims to trade blows with the YouTuber after agreeing a deal with Netflix for the summer. However, the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation will likely throw out plans to stage a full pro contest.

WBN spoke to Tela Mange during the build-up, but no decision was made despite Tyson stating he expected the contest to be an exhibition. Paul has since revealed he is clinging to hope that Texas will allow the battle on both professional records.

Those attempts will fail on three fronts. WBN has judged the situation based on Tyson’s recent video clips, previous rejections of former boxers, and the fact that any move would open the floodgates for dangerous bouts in the future.

For one, Tyson’s video of an ‘explosive run’ fell flat. He looked every inch his 57 years when running in an Instagram post designed to scare Paul. Secondly, no actual lengthy sparring footage exists of Tyson to contradict assumptions that his ten-second clips of mitt work are cut short due to tiredness.

WBN can make another point from the last time Tyson entered the ring. In 2020, he faced Roy Jones Jr., and both had to settle for exhibition status at the event. Furthermore, Oscar De La Hoya vs. Vitor Belfort wasn’t sanctioning 2021, especially when Evander Holyfield stepped in. De La Hoya fell ill, and Holyfield came in at eight days’ notice. There was absolutely no way “The Real Deal” would be licensed professionally, and he was the same age Tyson would be against Paul.

Unless something drastic happens, Paul’s request is simply bravado to plug the fight. What worldwide governing body will sanction a near-sixty-year-old former fighter who hasn’t fought in 19 years?

Whichever licensing organization does sanction Tyson, they can expect a massive backlash, something Texas surely will be keen to avoid. The oldest current heavyweight is Gerald Male of Uganda, boasting a 0-3 record with three knockout losses over seven years.

However, Male only faced up-and-coming Ugandan boxers, unlike Tyson, who is facing a 27-year-old who harbors delusional hopes of fighting Canelo Alvarez.

The Texas Commission has two choices on the matter. Either adhere to Paul’s wishes and grant the license based on who the opponent is and not the age or condition. Or give exhibition status and cover themselves from a certain torrent if Tyson is knocked out professionally for a third time.

Tyson’s only other alternative would be to see sanctioning outside of Texas.

The views expressed in this article are the opinions of Phil Jay. Learn more, read all articles from the experienced boxing writer, and follow on Twitter @PhilJWBN.