Mike Tyson Biography- At 5 feet 10 inches tall, weighing 200 pounds and more is a heavily muscular eccentric punter Mike Tyson. Nicknamed as Michael Gerard ‘Mike’ Tyson, right from his early days, Tyson showed signs of moving into the world of boxing. (Mike Tyson Bio)
His violent streak as a child, indomitable behavior and a resolve for violence through circumstances and circumstances laid a strong foundation for him to opt for boxing, not to mention his massive 200-pound weight at the age of 13 to forget. Known for his terrifying power and intimidating nature, Tyson quickly climbed the ladder of success under the strong guidance of Cus D’Amato and Rooney, earning the nicknames “Iron Mike” and “the worst man on the planet”. (Mike Tyson Biography)
He was popular for defeating his opponents with a single blow. Tyson’s dominant performance at the Games propelled him to the pinnacle of success, becoming the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world. But as Tyson climbed the ladder of success, he went down the pit with the same speed as his tarnished childhood, poverty-stricken upbringing, poor judgment, and criminal behavior.
Thus, while he was enjoying tremendous success and at the peak of his power, Tyson suffered severe trauma due to his bizarre behavior, rape convictions, financial loss, bankruptcy and imprisonment. He climaxed by biting off rival Evander Holyfield’s ear as the world wrote of him as a damaged beast that did not exist outside the ring. Although Tyson then tried to make amends, his image was forever destroyed, making him one of the saddest figures in American sports history. (Mike Tyson Bio)
Childhood and Early Life
- Born in Brooklyn, New York, to Jimmy Kirkpatrick and Lorna Smith Tyson, Mike Tyson was one of the couple’s three children. He had an older brother Rodney and a sister Denise, who died of a heart attack in 1991.
- Additionally, he also had a half-brother Jimmy Lee Kirkpatrick from Kirkpatrick’s previous marriage.
Kirkpatrick left the family after the birth of young Tyson. Due to the financial burden, the family moved from Bedford-Stuyvesant to Brownsville when Tyson was ten years old. (Mike Tyson Biography)
- Tyson was involved in feuds from his early years; Of course at this stage they were basically there only for personal reasons and did not have a professional basis.
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- Under Amato’s guidance, Tyson trained for the sport. He was in the full-time custody of Amato, who prescribed a rigorous training schedule for the aspiring boxer. Tyson attended Catskill High School during the day and practiced in the ring until evening. (Mike Tyson Bio)
Amateur Boxing Career
- Tyson’s training was very well evident in his performances at the Junior Olympic Games in 1981 and 1982, where he defeated opponents Joe Cortez and Kelton Brown to win gold medals, respectively.
- He eventually fought twice at the Trials against 1984 Summer Olympics heavyweight gold medalist Henry Tillman, losing on both occasions. Tyson turned professional after failing to make it to the Olympic team.
Professional Boxing Career
- His professional debut was on 6 March 1985 against Hector Mercedes. He won by knockout in the first round itself. (Mike Tyson Biography)
- In his first year, Tyson won 26 of the 28 fights he took part in, 16 of which he won in the first round. Slowly climbing the ladder, Tyson fought against veteran passenger fighters and frontline contenders such as James Tillis, David Jaco, Jesse Ferguson, Mitch Greene and Marvis Frazier.
- Tyson’s consecutive victories brought him to the attention of the media, who projected him as a future heavyweight champion. As his career was on an upward trajectory, Tyson faced turmoil outside the ring as his friend, philosopher and guide Amato left for the heavenly abode. Rooney filled in for Amato’s shoes.
- Tyson’s first televised fight was against Jesse Ferguson. He stumped the opponent by breaking the latter’s nose in the fifth round. By the sixth round, Tyson was declared the winner.
- By the age of 20, Tyson won 22 matches in a row, 21 of them by knockout.
- His string of victories eventually earned him his first title fight against Trevor Berbick for the World Boxing Council (WBC) Heavyweight Championship. On 22 November 1986, Tyson defeated Berbick in a second round knockout and became the youngest heavyweight champion in history at the age of 20 years and 4 months.
- After serving a prison sentence, Mike Tyson fought against inferior opponents such as Peter McNeely and Buster Mathis Jr. He won both matches to reach the match against defending champion Frank Bruno of the WBC in 1996. Tyson won by defeating Bruno in the third round. title. His next match was against Bruce Seldon. He won the match in a record 109 seconds, as well as claimed the WBA title.
- Mike Tyson then prepared for a match against Evander Holyfield, which he resolved to fight before being taken into custody. The match, deemed as a blood fight, which was heavily in Tyson’s favor, had an unexpected result. Holyfield’s left hook hit Tyson to the canvas first, resulting in the East’s win.
- A follow-up was arranged for the match, as there were allegations of Holyfield’s frequent headbutts from Tyson’s camp. The match was scheduled for June 28, 1997. While Holyfield received $35 million from the match, Tyson was remunerated $30 million. It was the highest paid boxing professional purse until 2007.
- In what was expected to be the biggest clash of the rival champions, the match turned into a horrific display of unprofessional behavior. Tyson cut Holyfield’s ears twice so much that he removed a piece of flesh from the latter’s right ear. The match ended in the third round and Tyson was disqualified for his actions. Holyfield was declared the winner. (Mike Tyson Bio)
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- Tyson was fined US$3 million by the Nevada State Boxing Commission. Additionally, his boxing license was revoked for one year by the Nevada State Athletic Commission. He was unable to box in the United States
- Trying to restore his married image of a bloodthirsty beast in vengeance, Tyson attempts a clean-up. He fought a few elite opponents before pitting against Andrzej Golota. Meanwhile, he was jailed twice for his involvement in a road incident where he attacked two motorists and traces of marijuana were found in their bodies.
- In 2002, Mike Tyson faced Lennox Lewis, who was reigning at the time with the WBC, IBF, IBO and Lineal titles under his belt. Despite being a favorite of the pundits, Tyson lost in the eighth round, facing a right hook knockout. Lewis who dominated the fight from the beginning was declared the winner. Tyson took the failure gracefully and praised Lewis’ skill for the game.
- Tyson played a few matches after Lewis match. He underperformed in all of them. His last professional outing was in a match against Kevin McBride on 11 June 2005. He left the match and announced his retirement before the start of the seventh round.
- After retirement, Mike Tyson took part in several exhibition matches. The main reason for their participation was to pay off their debts. He also participated in several commercials and various boxing related entertainment shows in Las Vegas.
- Though he preferred to lead a normal life without any limelight and media attention, he came under the knife once again after being arrested on suspicion of DUI and felony drug possession. He spent 24 hours in prison and offered 360 hours of community service. To save himself from a year-long sentence, Tyson checked himself into a rehabilitation center. (Mike Tyson Biography)
- Tyson began acting in films and television after retiring from his boxing career. In 2009, she made her big screen debut with the film ‘The Hangover’ where she made an uncharacteristic appearance.
- In the theatre, with director Spike Lee, Tyson staged a stage show, “Mike Tyson: The Undisputed Truth.” The show depicts Tyson’s personal and professional life. It visited 36 cities in three months.
- He co-wrote his memoirs ‘Undisputed Truth’ (2013) and ‘Iron Ambition: My Life with Cus d’Amato’ (2017) with Larry Sloman. (Mike Tyson Bio)
Awards and Achievements
- He holds the record for being the youngest heavyweight boxing champion of all time. Then his age was only 20 years 4 months. (Mike Tyson Biography)
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- Junior Olympic fast KO (knock-out) in 8 seconds is by Tyson.
- In 1985, Tyson won Ring magazine Prospect of the Year For his outstanding performance in the ring, he was awarded the Ring Magazine Fighter of the Year award in 1986 and 1988.
- Such was his reputation as a ruthless fighter that his opponents were informed by the idea of his strength, his quick fists and renowned defensive abilities. His ability to defeat opponents in the first round earned him the nickname ‘Iron Mike’. (Mike Tyson Bio)
- He was the undisputed heavyweight champion from 1987 to 1990. He was the first heavyweight boxer to win the WBA, WBC and IBF titles simultaneously, and the only heavyweight to unify them in a row.
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