OKAY, the time has finally
come to put the whole Mike Tyson thing into perspective.
And yes, we all know why.
Once again, “Iron Mike”
made a full contribution to yet another one of his fights ending in
near chaos, when he brushed aside referee John Coyle to land an additional
flurry of punches on the hapless Lou Savarese: in spite of the fact
that Coyle was in the process of calling an end to the bout.
Savarese (left) is shielded from Mike Tyson by referee John Coyle
during their non-title heavyweight fight at Hampden Park in Glasgow,
Scotland, Saturday, June 24. Tyson won the fight after it was
stopped after 38 seconds of the first round.
Technically, it was not on
the same level as hitting Orlin Norris after the bell, last October.
Certainly, it did not even come close to munching on Evander Holyfield’s
ears, three years ago. Nevertheless, the latest incident served to further
calcify the notion that Tyson is a man who appears to have a control
After all, why else would
a man, on more than one occasion, traverse not only the basic codes
of professional boxing, but human ethics as a whole? Could it be a severe
psychological disorder that no one has tried to confirm, let alone treat?
At least, one can point to a trail of other unsavoury incidents that
have occurred outside of the ring as evidence that there is something
Let’s see, in August of
1998 Tyson attacks two elderly men after he and his wife, Monica, are
involved in a non serious accident along a stretch of road in Maryland.
“Iron Mike” spends a couple of months in the can for this assault. His
conviction came four years after he served time in Indiana for the rape
of a beauty contestant in an Indianapolis hotel room. This capped off
years of incidents in which he was censured for sexual fondling of women
in public. He was also involved in a street fight with one of his former
ring opponents and was alleged to have physically abused his former
wife, Robin Givens. As a matter of fact she accused Tyson of being “manic
depressive” as he sat silently behind her, while being interviewed on
a television show. Their marriage also featured an episode involving
Tyson ramming a Mercedes Benz into a tree and having to be carted off
Getting back to the ring,
Tyson’s heyday was marred by some of the wild statements that he made
concerning his fights. He admitted to trying to push Jesse Ferguson’s
nose bone into his brain, following a 1986 bout. Even at the age of
15, while still under the tutelage of Cus D’Amato, Tyson was caught
on documentary video, enthusing about the joy of hitting his amateur
opponents in their heads. Of course, it was through boxing that the
New York native was exonerated from reform school – having already kick-started
an initial career as a pre-teen mugger.
It is just amazing how much
stuff most of us mentally by-passed during Tyson’s late-80’s heavyweight
championship reign: and how little has changed in the five years since
being released from prison in Indiana. There have been more brushes
with the law and more accusations of indecent assault from women. What's
different is that the statements have gotten wilder and there are now
those unforgettable ring episodes.
All of this will continue
so long as Tyson continues to generate money for promoters and cable
networks. So long as we continue to be fascinated by Mike’s awesome
power and neglect concern about the potential for something very bad
happening. So long as those around him continue to ignore his apparent
problem. So long as there are still those granting Tyson a second chance.
Yes, Tyson needs help. But
the question is: When will the first brave person step forward - before
or after it is too late?