Former heavyweight king Mike Tyson has had some quite sensational things to say about his ring career, about his former promoter Don King, and about rigged fights – these fights being his own. And not all of these fights were rigged in favor of “Iron Mike,” the 57-year-old said. Speaking on a recent episode of the podcast Boxing Arabia, Tyson was asked once again about the catastrophic defeat he suffered at the hands of James “Buster” Douglas in Tokyo in 1990.
In particular, Tyson was asked about the infamous “long count” in round eight, this when Douglas was felled by a wicked Tyson uppercut and was given a slow count by the referee. Douglas beat the count, and that’s all that mattered, but he was given a few precious extra seconds. Now, Tyson is saying King “set me up” and had him lose the way the flamboyant promoter had fixed some of Tyson’s earlier fights in his favor.
“Don King did that bulls**t, Don King set me up,” Tyson said on the podcast. “I never said that before, but it made sense. The 42-1 [odds against Douglas], I could win this, him and the referee talk that bulls**t, because I don’t want to tell you what we did before. I’m not going to mention no promoters; there were fights I had where the opponent didn’t know they were fighting me and the referee. That’s just how it went: people are betting, the odds, they got a hold of the referee; they’re fighting me and the referee. I don’t know, the guy didn’t even know, then I found out later what’s going on … and then they did it to me (in the Douglas fight).”
Fascinating stuff from Tyson. Of course, Tyson has no tangible proof to put forth to support his claims, but why would Tyson make this kind of thing up? Tyson, in his prime, seemed to need absolutely no outside help to win his fights, so destructive a force of nature he was back then. It would be interesting to hear Tyson list the fights he was referring to; if he can even remember them.
It was, as the world knew at the time and still knows now, THE biggest upset in all of sport when Douglas knocked Tyson out in that tenth round in Japan. Was King working his, shall we say, magic to make it happen? That’s the way Tyson is telling it these days. Again, fascinating and sensational stuff.
Meanwhile, Tyson, who is co-training Francis Ngannou for his huge fight with Tyson Fury, says his guy will win and that the result will knock Douglas KO Tyson off the top spot as far as the biggest sporting upsets ever. Now, that would be sensational!