WAIL! The CyberBoxingZone Journal
October 2000 issue

Tyson Against the World

By Mohammed Khan
Former two-time undisputed heavyweight champion Mike Tyson railroaded over the former United States Boxing Association (USBA) and International Boxing Association (IBA) heavyweight champion Lou Savarese in Glasgow, Scotland on June 24, 2000. The fight served as an important credibility statement for Tyson's behavior, which now rockets him to the very top of the division. Tyson's convincing first round TKO started by landing a left hook on Savarese's temple 11 seconds into the bout. Savarese never recovered from the shot and the fight was ended by the referee before the closing first round bell sounded. Finally, boxing fans were treated to a vintage Tyson performance that had not been seen in his recent fights.

This vintage performance was marked with some definitely non vintage events surrounding the fight, namely, protests from women's groups and politicians that dedicated themselves to keep Tyson out of the country. Tyson was never uniformly loved by the public, even before his rape conviction, but nowadays there is a rage of hate by a general sector of the public against Tyson. This small sector is still not big enough to ban Tyson from fighting, thankfully, for boxing fans. The real problem with the anti-Tyson rhetoric is the damage to his credibility. Tyson has been called a shot fighter, has been, and passed his prime. Such allegations discount Tyson's performance within the last year. The post prison Tyson has had 3 major accomplishments that, if not for his public loathing, should have him ranked number 2 or 3 to Lennox Lewis. But this is not the case, Tyson is ranked as far as number 8 by Ring magazine, and other publications refuse to consider him seriously at all.

These publications, the boxing ranking officials, and the general public should examine the 3 major boxing achievements Tyson has accomplished recently. First, and foremost is the knock out of Botha in 1999. Botha, who is scheduled to fight the undisputed heavyweight champion Lewis in a few months, is a solid heavyweight who is guaranteed to give a fighter 12 rounds, as he did with Michael Moorer, and Shannon Briggs. Tyson knocked out Botha in devastating fashion with one right hook in the fifth round. Although the overall fight showed Tyson's lack of conditioning and speed, his power remained in tact. Botha himself stated that "a regular guy wouldn't have gotten up from that punch, at least I got up and walked away."

Tyson's second accomplishment was his fight with Orlin Norris. Upon close examination, discounting the punch after the bell that hurt Tyson's credibility, there was the right hook that dropped Norris in the first round causing his alleged knee injury. Norris is another solid, second rate heavyweight who recently went 12 rounds with the hard hitting Andrew Golota. Golota never gained a knock down from all his power shots, yet the punch Tyson landed was completely ignored due to the no decision (ND) fiasco. Is there another heavyweight who could have landed such a punch? I doubt it.

Tyson's third and most recent accomplishment is his knock out of Savarese. Savarese is another solid heavyweight who went 12 rounds with George Foreman a few years ago. A 38 second stoppage by a few series of Tyson power shots seemed to be the punches that finally got the boxing world's attention. The number one ranked contender David Tua, has no such feats. Fast knock outs of John Ruiz and Obed Sullivan are poor substitutes. Ruiz and Sullivan have never faced the opposition that Savarese and Botha did, yet the Tua knock outs were received with a lot more sensation then Tyson's TKOs. A trainer in boxing remarked recently that Tyson fights alone, not having a trust worthy friend, promoter, or manager in his corner. Along with the public sector that hates him, Tyson seems to be fighting against the world. This may add entertainment value to his fights, but it hurts his historical creditability with the boxing press. This unfortunate fact is evident when a second rate fighter liked Tua is ranked ahead of the greatest puncher of the modern era. The self proclaimed "baddest man on the planet" may be too bad for his own good.

Back To WAIL! Contents Page


Upcoming Fights

Current Champions

Boxing Journal

On-line Encyclopedia


Main Page

[Return to Top]