By: Sean Crose
It was inevitable, perhaps. There was simply no way Mike Tyson was going to earn millions fighting Roy Jones, who he never competed with in his prime, without Evander Holyfield stepping up as a future opponent at some point. Holyfield and Tyson have fought twice, after all. Indeed, their rematch might well be the single most shocking moment in all boxing history. And if you know boxing history, you know that’s really saying something. It should be no surprise, then, that Holyfield has now publicly called out Tyson for a third showdown in the ring. Never mind the whippersnappers – it’s the old timers drawing all the attention now.
“My side tried to make the fight happen,” Holyfield is quoted as saying in a press release, “and we got nothing but excuses.” According to Holyfield, the idea of an exhibition throwdown was his. What’s more, he feels like Jones was simply an opponent who could help Tyson shake the rust off. “Now,” Holyfield said, “I can see why he wanted a tune-up fight before thinking about fighting me.”
“Roy Jones was a good local opponent for Mike,” Holyfield conceded. “But a fight with me would be a global event and the only fight that anyone wants to see is a fight between us. There’s absolutely no reason we shouldn’t make it happen.” Judging from the response to last Saturday’s exhibition bout between Tyson and Jones, a third Tyson-Holyfield match might prove to be a lucrative and popular endeavor….though still a very dangerous one for two men in their fifties.
“No more excuses,” claimed Holyfield. “This is the fight that must happen for both our legacies. Saturday night you said you were ready to fight me, so sign the contract and get in the ring, Tyson. The world is waiting and its on you now. I’m ready.”
Although another Tyson-Holyfield fight would showcase two men clearly no longer in their primes, it would act as a continuation of one of boxing’s epic sagas. Tyson was widely expected to best Holyfield when the two men first met in November of 1996, but the fighter known as “Iron Mike” ended up getting clobbered. The rematch the following summer was the infamous “Ear Bite Bout,” which needs no introduction. Having made amends of a personal level, both men may now have the chance to hash out any further problems in the ring….and possibly for a considerable amount of money.