What Are You, Crazy?!

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This post primarily is about boxing, but it does have a comedy slant that will only be present at the end.

Most of you have heard about Mike Tyson, the most feared heavyweight boxer in decades, making a comeback to the ring.  Oh yeah, he’s also 53 years old.

Tyson is a complex individual, far too complex with a story far too long to be talked about in one blog piece.  So I’ll try to summarize as best I can.

Tyson was born in New York, father wasn’t around, his mother died when he was young.  Got into trouble with the law, then found Cus D’Amato, the legendary boxing trainer.  He trained Tyson early on, then he passed away.  Then Tyson transformed into the baddest man on the planet.  He had something like a dozen straight fights where he won by KO in the first round.  People bought the pay per view fight just to see how quickly he could win.  He then became the youngest heavyweight champ in history at age 21, married a t.v. star, got divorced, lost his heavyweight title to a massive underdog in Japan, went to jail for rape, got out, came back but lost to journeyman fighters, all the while getting ripped off from his promoter, Don King.

Tyson did make a decent living, but blew all his money.  He then bred homing pigeons to race and now runs a successful marijuana business.  He also is a student of history, which is odd, given his upbringing.  He reads a lot about modern history, about war, the great generals of our time, war strategy and the history of war.

In a post on Instagram I believe, he mentioned that the gods of war have summoned him, have reawakened him to go and fight again.

At 53, he still has the moves, the speed and the head movement that other heavyweights don’t have.  Even George Foreman, when he won the title at 45 years old after a comeback that saw him retire in 1977, then come back about 20 years later, he didn’t have the footwork or much speed.  But Foreman had power.  He didn’t move side to side.  He was impossible to move.  He just knew one direction in the boxing ring, and that was going forward.  Watching Tyson during workouts, it’s evident he can still box.

But, he is 53 and the heavyweights today are more powerful than those of days gone by, even though they still don’t have the speed or boxing acumen that Tyson did.  Well, the only other one would be Tyson Fury, but he’s way taller yet has the same defensive ability that Iron Mike has.

I say all that to say this.  There are a lot of people who saw Tyson in his heyday that don’t want him to be fighting again in a regularly sanctioned boxing match.  He’s too old, he won’t have the stamina to go 12 rounds, even though his speed and skills, especially his power, are still present.

Then there is the other camp called millennials, who have only seen Tyson on video and never witnessed his past glory.  In todays world of social media, there is a lot of support and public pressure to see him back in the ring, and not just for a charity fight like he has stated.

Now, to circle back to comedy.

If there is anyone in the comedy scene qualified to talk about breaking new ground and trying things that cause a stir, it would be me.  The intangibles that make up a performer, or an athlete are usually what’s found on the inside, or at least what people think is on the inside of that person.  Regardless of the reasons he is coming back, if he believes that he can, then why would he go to all this trouble posting stuff on social media, going through the training and getting in shape, for what?  A simple exhibition fight?

Tyson is too smart.  This is all part of a marketing ploy on his part to generate interest and substantial money for a return to the ring.  And in the land of opportunity that is North America, who are we to stop him?

I guess in boxing, just like comedy, you can come up with a litany of reasons as to why a person will succeed or fail.  But in the end, they don’t know what’s on the inside.  The only person Mike Tyson needed to convince that he could come back, was himself.  It sounded like he did that a long time ago.

Look out world.

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