Mike Tyson: Greatest of all Time

There are certain boxers that everyone knows regardless of whether or not they’ve actually watched a fight before. Muhammad Ali is known as the greatest even to those who have never actually witnessed him “fly like a butterfly and sting like a bee.” His bouts with Joe Frasier are known to be legendary even to those who have no idea how devastating a Frasier right hook was. George Forman is famous the world over even if it is has more to do with grilling than beating the living crap out of people.

A great heavyweight boxer can transcend the ring and become part of our popular culture. In this regard, the greatest boxer of all time has got to be Iron Mike Tyson.

The argument can be made (and frequently has been) that Tyson in his prime was the greatest boxer ever to step foot in the ring. In his hayday he went through heavyweight boxers like a buzzsaw cutting through paper. You could see the fear in his opponents eyes before the fight. For my money, that was always the most fun part of a Tyson fight. The pre-fight staredown. I remember watching and thinking. “aww man, this guy is about to shit himself on live TV!”

Whether or not you agree that Tyson was the best fighter, can there be any arguing that he was the most fascinating? Tyson has been anything but boring throughout his career. His story is tiumphant, tragic, humorous, and dramatic all at the same time. He always kept us on our toes. This is why I say he is the greatest. He is pound for pound the most entertaining man in the history of the sport.

A short while ago I watched the new Tyson documentary. I highly recommend it for anyone who hasn’t seen it. It was done very well. So well in fact that it inspired me to do this little tribute to the man myself. Hope you enjoy…

My Tribute to Mike Tyson

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28 comments

  1. You are crazy…Ali, Frasier or even Foreman in his prime woulda killed Tyson. Michael Spinks?? Tyson beat up a bunch of tomato cans…quick and ferocious…but tomato cans none the less.

  2. I had my left ear and part of my nose bitten off in a fight/mugging. What Tyson did to Holyfield was outrageous and a disgrace to boxing. The 3 animals that mugged me got 18 months in jail for trying to kill me – they were on angel Dust. Tyson biting the ear off of Holyfield proved how unprofessional and undisciplined he was. I’d rather vote for Ali or Sugar Ray Leonard. Sugar Ray was fantastic and Ali, well, he’s the real people’s champion I think. 

  3. yeah, tyson buzzsawed through a lot of nobodys, and AVOIDED fighting Holyfield for HOW LONG?  i dunno.  no stamina, man.  if he didn’t win in 3 rounds, he was done.  fun to watch, but… eh.  i think he was the boxing equivalent of a decent team in a BAD conference or division… a lot like… Gonzaga in college basketball.  i think he was the best fighter in an era of not-great fighters.  Ali would have beaten him just like he beat Foreman. 

  4. The shame of it was he was a coward. The first time a bigger man stood in front of him and said to himself “you’re going to take 2 lefts and strait right before you can get to me”. “Then I’m going to back up and do it again until you can beat me down”. That day Tyson show a fear of pain, and lost to Buster Douglas. And everyone knew after that how to beat Tyson. You just had to be tougher than him, long enough to hurt him. Then his inner coward would lose it for him.My father has has coolest boxing tapes. “The Thrilla in Manila” That is an amazing fight you would have thought one or both of them would have died in it. There was no inner coward, no fear of pain, in ether Muhammad Ali or Joe Frazier.

  5. He had an incredible knock-out record.  There is/was a lot of power behind that fist & I would NEVER want to be in front of it.  I grew up watching Ali with my dad and remember a lot of fighters during his time and a bit later.  While I can’t run stats and comparisons very well, I have no respect whatsoever for Tyson.  I never cared for Spinks, but Ali, Sugar Ray, Foreman, and Holyfield all have my respect as boxers and human beings, though why someone would name all their kids George is beyond me.  Shall we go back to Joe Louis?

  6. Dear Vanedave:  As a boxer, Tyson was formidable.  As a PROFESSIONAL- a representative of an ancient and once honorable sport- he was a disgrace as few others have been in any calling.  Professionalism encompasses not only natural ability, but discipline and values.  Tyson had little of the latter.  So little, in fact, that he came as close as any to bringing down the sport in this country.  The fact that he was profoundly sick in his mind, yet still allowed to box by the commissions is an indictment of all endeavors who hold profits above standards.  By that measure, it’s almost a wonder that he didn’t go on to a Hollywood career afterwards!  It’s important for all young people that those who are prominent in public life be held to a high standard and not be lauded in spite of personal, unprofessional conduct.

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