NEW YORK. — Legendary heavyweight boxer Mike Tyson says he is “ready to go to war again” as he continues training ahead of a potential return to the boxing ring.
The 53-year-old, who retired 15 years ago, has been using the current lockdown period to train with MMA coach Rafael Cordeiro.
Tyson, who holds the record for the youngest world heavyweight champion ever at 20 years of age, has announced plans to return in exhibition bouts to raise money for charity, and believes he is in good condition ahead of a mouthwatering return this year.
“That’s all I’ve been doing, getting into shape,” Tyson said on a #PlayApartTogether live stream on Facebook.
“I feel unstoppable now. I feel the same again. The gods of war ignited my ego and want me to go to war again.
“Imagine if I went out there and fought and I could help all these people we talked about.”
A video of the 53-year-old hitting the pads with trademark tenacity went viral last week and he has since revealed he would like to take part in a four-round exhibition match.
The American has been linked with fights against Sonny Bill Williams, Brit Danny Williams and even former foe Evander Holyfield.
Old rival Holyfield has revealed plans to fight to raise money for charity. Holyfield defeated Tyson twice in the mid-1990s, with Tyson biting his opponent’s ear in their 1997 rematch, and leading many fans have been speculating that the pair could make a trilogy fight.
Holyfield insists he is ready to come out of retirement and fight fellow heavyweight legend Tyson for a third time. Iron Mike teased his possible return last month after he posted a clip on Instagram which hinted he still boasts some of the ferocious punching power and lightning fast hand speed which made him one of the most feared boxers in the history of the sport.
Tyson, now 53, subsequently revealed he intends to fight four round exhibition bouts in a bid to raise money for charity and has been linked with a string of opponents including the likes of Shannon Briggs and All Blacks star Sonny Bill Williams.
Holyfield, four years Tyson’s senior, is also planning on hitting the comeback trail and would not be opposed to getting in the ring with his old adversary who infamously bit off a chunk of his ear during their second meeting in 1997.
“Well you know it wouldn’t bother me to do so because I did it for 12 or 13 years,” Holyfield told TMZ. “I’m always thinking that the person who takes care of themselves well are the ones that tend to last, even though I’m four years older than him. It would be no problem.
“You know my manager he has been talking and all that, but the fact is with me the only person I would really ask is Ridick Bowe because me and him are buddies.”
Pressed on whether he’d be prepared to go toe-to-toe with Tyson, he added: “I would think so. You know life is about two people really trusting each other and what can we do now. There is a lot of things Mike and I have done together that works.
“Obviously people like to see the two best people. Some people didn’t get the chance to see Mike and I. Everything is opinionated now about who the best is. I was the best of my era I felt. “I can’t have anyone take a cheap shot at me I’m a little too old to get that stuff happening to me. The body don’t come back as well.” However, boxing promoter Frank Warren has expressed concerns that a comeback would tarnish Iron Mike’s boxing legacy.
Writing in the Metro, the Queensberry Promotions chief said: “I don’t care if Mike Tyson is in the gym for the next 10 years, he has no chance against any heavyweight.
“I have no idea who would licence him at the age of 53 if it wasn’t an exhibition match. I can’t see any governing body doing that.
“I know the lockdown is driving us all a bit mad and there’s lots of talk about fantasy fights, but all the fighters who come back all wind up one way — going straight back out again.
“If they make it into the ring, they all get beat bad and embarrassed.” - Mailonline