The Book on Mike Tyson - Boxing's Biggest Stiff or American Icon
By the time it's all said and done, and no matter what your position on Mike Tyson, this is sure to be a Standing Room Only Event.
Tyson advocates are everywhere these days; not only on Hub Pages but on all social medias. They make no bones extolling his mythical athletic prowess and his contribution to Pop Culture. Take a tour of the boundless Hub Pages articles that afford him "10 Foot Tall" accolades. Here's one essay that his supporters won't want to miss..."Top Ten Greatest Boxers of All Time (The Ultimate List).http://hubpages.com/hub/Top-Ten-Greatest-Boxers-of-All-Time#comment-12252694 He is ranked by this Hub author at #5, and that's All Time and in All Divisions! Four spots below (#!) Louis and three places below (#2) Ali. Placed above Frazier, Foreman and Holmes. Absurd and hard to swallow for anyone even remotely knowledgeable of the sport.
I have been called a "Tyson Hater" by this author (he throws that term around on a routine basis). I take issue on the #5 ranking and call into question the author's journalistic integrity. His defenses are all blatant dismissals of Tyson's Boxing 101 failures. You will come to see how he treats Tyson as though he were a "Puppy Dog". The "Confetti" he throws on Tyson's Pop Culture status comes in an array of blinding colors. He makes no concessions to any point which scrutinizes Tyson in or out of the ring.
I don't hate Mr. Tyson. In fact, I wish him well on his recent endeavors. I hate my ex-wife, Pete Rose and Lance Armstrong; all distorted the truth, lied through their teeth. They also insulted our intelligence. In this Hub article I will make the same comparison to the Hub author mentioned above.
Is he entitled to his opinion??? Most definitely, but he is also obligated to bring a minimal amount of Truth and Integrity to his Hub Pages audience. My notebook will show him overtly remiss on these issues. He follows a course that distorts the truth. His views, his so called "facts" on the Desiree Washington rape case are not only particularly distasteful and abrasive, but are also repugnant.
"Iron Mike" Tyson's #1 Advocate
The author (from here on out to be identified as D.H.) of the Hub article, "Top Ten Greatest Boxers of All Time (The Ultimate List), has got to be Tyson's top advocate. No matter that Tyson has a lengthy criminal record and is a convicted felon. No matter that Tyson's competition in the ring was pathetic. D.H. sees Tyson as the Savior of Boxing and an American Icon worthy of role model status for all children.
Initially I thought D.H. suffered from the "Homeboy Syndrome" (Spike Lee, Tyson and D.H. all from the Bronx). However, this theory was too sophomoric for such a prolific and knowledgeable journalist.
Then came my monumental epiphany. As diabolical as it might seem, I was absolutely convinced D. H. purposely ranked Tyson at #5 for the sole reason that it would create what I refer to as "Journalist Frenzy." By his design the #5 ranking would be so controversial and create so much banter between boxing pundits that the Hub Pages "hit-count' would render him, not only notoriety as a prolific sports journalist, but also bring him higher profitability via the Hub Pages earnings system.
However, that theory proved to be too complex. His responses were just too vague, and his reasoning was far too uninformed. I had come to realize that his endless "Puppy Dog" defenses and "10 Foot Tall Accolades" of Tyson had no boundaries. In his not so sober-minded and unshakable conclusions, Tyson did no wrong, in or out of the ring, This degree of Hero Worship became more than just disconcerting to me, he was insulting my intelligence, and that of his audience, by routinely dismissing all of Tyson's flaws and shortcomings as a human being and professional boxer.
I saw D.H. immortalizing Tyson to such a degree that I brought his journalistic integrity into question. In my opinion, and no matter the motivation of D.H., the truth was being slanted.
Among the criteria for D.H. in ranking boxers is their impact on Pop Culture or their Cultural Significance.
I believe the overall evaluation goes along the lines as something like this...
"the more video games that can be sold off of a fighter's notoriety, then the greater he is perceived to be a contributor in Pop Culture," thus that fighter is elevated in position to The Ultimate List rankings."
Their degree of fame and notoriety on an international level also racks up the points. Though if D.H. were thoughorly honest with himself and his audience, this would be his attempt to align Tyson with the likes of Joe Louis and Muhammad Ali. He states that...
"Mike Tyson is so popular he has old ladies in Istanbul who know him well and even admire him.''
My response to the D.H. quote above...
I really need to know if the "Old Lady of Istanbul" is a sober minded thought or just an odd quip that he couldn't resist??? I was hardly able to pick myself up off the floor and needed oxygen by the time I was done laughing. I say that,...should there be even a remote possibility of such an "Old Lady of Istanbul" that has knowledge of him it was because he had his ass handed to him in Tokyo and nothing to do with his popularity in the world press, nintendo nor any other such "other-worldly" international notoriety.
"The Debacle in *Tokyo" is monumentally renown as the "Biggest Upset in the *History of Boxing." Tyson as the KO'ed loser to a 45-1 underdog by the name of "Buster." He was thereafter and forevermore banished from the Wolfpack as an Alpha-Male "wannabe."
"Alpha-males don't get distracted, they focus on the prey...and then it's over."
"Blowing Apart" the Cultural Significance of Mike Tyson
Mike Tyson...a "CARTOON LIKE CHARACTER IN POP CULTURE"
"Despite denying that he raped Desiree Washington (get details on the case), Mike Tyson served three years in prison after he was convicted. He never regained the "Iron Mike" persona that made him boxing's most feared fighter, eventually becoming a sideshow after partially biting off Evander Holyfield's ear during their famous bout (watch a clip). His personal, legal and financial problems (get details) made him a cartoon-like character in pop culture, although he remains popular after nailing his role (as himself) in the movie "The Hangover" (watch clips)."
FROM FOX SPORTS
The author of this Fox Sports quote was called a "Tyson Hater" by D.H. (I guess I'm in good company then). D.H. gave no heed when I pointed out that the Fox sportswriter must answer to his Editor in Chief for any wrongful and defamatory remarks, and ditto to the entire global media giant known as the Fox Entertainment Group/subsidiary of 21st Century Fox. D.H. had no retort to this. It should not be a surprise to anyone when I say that he becomes eerily reticent as the recipient of a "Down for the Count Knock-Out" blow.
An Immortalizing Moment
On biting off Holyfield's ear...
"It was an immortalizing moment."
He goes one to further say,..
"Most people don't know the inside story about the infamous ear biting. Tyson didn't know how to pull the ref into acknowledging his concerns the way other fighters are able to. You have to act a little bit , exaggerate and call attention to what the other fighter is pulling. In the first fight Holyfield got away with head butting Tyson...Many people misinterpreted the action (of biting the ear off) thinking Tyson purposely did that to back out of the fight, because they don't know the mind of a street person. Tyson was mad and just wanted hurt and punish Holyfield."
This absurdity leads to a well documented medical diagnosis. Tyson is not your every-day street person. He has what is referred to in the scientific and psychological field as a "Warrior Mentality" (see Nova - Science Now/ "Can Science Fix the Criminal Mind" - PBS). His chemistry is off balance, to no small degree, and his brain is smaller than normal folk.
The end result...we have a madman with a facial tattoo who bites opponents ears off and extolls unknown and unwarranted violence to both civilian men and innocent women.
It's not even the least bit laughable that D.H. uses this event as part of "the Tyson Ascent to Immortality."
Boxing 101 Deficiencies
1.) Boxing 101 dictates that one should never have his feet or shoulders parallel to his opponent or the ropes. It gives them the advantage of leverage, allowing the adversary to command the body actions of both fighters, This was a discipline Tyson never followed. In later rounds of a bout and during intense in-fighting he was always the subservient boxer.
2.) An inability to "cut-off"' the ring. No field generalship. Another Boxing 101 essential strategy which he refuses to employ. Or is it that Tyson is simply "a Dunce In and Out of the Ring?"
3.) An inability to "finish" an opponent once Tyson has them vulnerable; either on the ropes or on the canvas,
4.) He never, not once, got up off the canvas to "settle accounts" with an opponent.
5.) Accolades and kudos for the Spinks and Holmes fights???
Tyson supporters use these two fights to put Tyson over the threshold from being the Best in His Era to the GOAT. However, it is time for them to "Pony Up" for their twofold "Erroneous Spin." My notebook will show us a "shut and closed case" of both "Jinx" and Holmes, the Verdict...both fights are totally MEANINGLESS!
Spinks gained 30 lbs. in 10 weeks to move up into the Heavyweight Division. He's a natural Light Heavy @170 pounds, among the very best LH's ever. If one is expecting to reach optimum performance levels, 17% over and above one's natural body weight is cause for concern no matter what your age, condition or profession. Have this dialogue with your physician; better still have it with Bert Sugar, Harold Lederman, Jim Lampley or Larry Merchant. All the above placed a BIG ??? mark on Spink's STAMINA. In round 4 of both fights with the 35/36 yr. old Holmes he was gasping for air, mouth agape. By round 11 both hands were regularly being fully extended to his side. OK, so he out -decisioned an old man twice. Then he beat on a "Club Fighter" who had 28 fights, all but one were either in Chicago or Europe; his lone Las Vegas appearance was vs. Spinks. Say goodnight Mr. Steffen Tangstad. Onward now to another old man, Jerry Cooney/age 31, who fought a total of 7 rounds in the previous three years before the Spinks bout. Oy, ve.
Now he's ready for Tyson???????? Spinks was a Light Heavy and an LH only.
The Easton Assassin was on a "Death Watch" since he turned 32 years old. In 1988 he brought his undeniable courage into the ring vs. Tyson, but little else as he was only a shell of his former self. A punch-less, defenseless 38 year old Grandfather was easy prey. Age difference of 17 years. Had not fought a single round in the previous 19 months.
Of interesting note: Holmes lit-up the front pages of every sports media publication when he boldly predicted that..."Tyson will go to jail." This statement came 4 years prior to Tyson's rape conviction. Apparently, Mr. Holmes keen intuition knows a "criminally insane individual" when he sees one.
6.) More kudos for unifying 5 belts/titles???
All this "Confetti" on the unification of belts...let me describe it to you in academic terms, if I may? These "Titles" were little more than infantismal small corners of a desperate Boxing Industry. Those fella's he beat on, now let's take a look see...
The following 5 fighters, Title holders, were truly "remarkable" now weren't they...or maybe was it that they were more in the "forgettable" category??? Title Holders, i.e., Seldon (1), Bruno, Burbick, Smith and Tucker...who between the 5 of them have a combined total of ONLY ONE SINGLE SUCCESSFUL TITLE DEFENSE. Those 5, should they be able to mix and combine their talents together as ONE BOXER would add up to being a mere fringe contender to the likes of Liston, Frazier, Foreman, Holmes, Louis or Ali..
"My career was over in 1990."
D.H., your refusal to come to terms with this statement, as Mike has, is why some might see you as being without journalistic integrity.
7.) And greater still A & K's for being the KO King??? Here's what the Tyson Camp can do with that...Liston, Frazier and Foreman were a combined 105-2 with 90 by KO before they fought and lost to Ali. NOTE...Ali was in charge of all men (all HW Champions) from start to finish and KO'ed all three.
- RECOMMENDED Hub: "The Assassination of Muhammad Ali."
8.) He lost his aggressiveness when frustrated or unable to KO an opponent in early rounds. As many analysists observed in their statements..."Tyson doesn't appear to be up to the task either physically or mentally."
9.) No Olympic Gold
1984 Olympic Trials...he did not bring forth the talent and ability needed to answer this "moment of truth." Two Olympic Trials Losses to Henry Tillman...although he avenged with a KO over Tillman as a pro at a later date...the "Gold" and the memorable accolades of being "a Distinguished Member of the United States of America Olympic Boxing Team" will not be on his resume nor be part of his epitaph.
10.) February 11, 1990/Tokyo, Japan
Excuses range from "he was drugged" to he was "out of shape," and "he just had a bad night." All these are "Puppy Dog" defense. I don't believe that nonsense for a minute, nor did Teddy Atlas, Sugar Ray Leonard and a multitude of other "authorities," and neither should anyone else. These dismissals are an insult to the reader's intelligence. He was 23 years old and a 45-1 favorite. The Champ had this opponent on the canvas and Buster Douglas was nearly counted out. Tyson couldn't "finish" his opponent, and this is a career long trait, another Boxing 101 failure. Tyson not worthy of serious scrutiny in questioning his #5 ranking??? Ladies and Gentleman, this fight is known as "The Biggest Upset in the History of Boxing" PERIOD. Youngest to win the HW Title...Youngest to lose it.
A full report on Tyson's technical boxing shortfalls can be seen at another Hub of mine..
- "Mike Tyson, the Myth - Flawed Boxer and Overrated Champion"
Defiling Black Women and the Black Community
D.H. on Desiree Washington and Tyson's Rape conviction...
"Is he a rapist? No. He was accused by an obvious set up situation when he was rolling in cash, by a sketchy girl who falsely accused others in the past but mysteriously, they refused to admit her lying past in court. I kid you not, this is all fact, R.W. Look it up. They KNEW she lied about others in the past. Someone who cried rape(again) and lied in her past was allowed to win over Tyson. The evidence wasn’t really there..."
I refuse to allow Hepkins to throw his "Exonerate Tyson" flags at every turn. His blatantly ignorant summation of the rape case issues flies in the face of
(1) eyewitness testimony
(2) physicians substantiation
(3) and the U.S. Justice system.
He should review the facts for himself in the N.Y. Times archives. That Desiree Washington faked a previous rape charge is UNSUBSTANTIATED. The teenager who said Desiree Washington "cried rape" in accusing him of the same crime as Tyson would REFUSED TO TAKE THE STAND, and after REFUSING THE OATH, he then slithered into darkness refusing to discuss the matter under oath or otherwise.
The D.H. distortion of the facts is nothing short of disturbing. Again, he insults his audience's intelligence. Best that he exercises his shameful and abrasive nonsense on the "Old Lady of Istanbul," but not on us!!!
Guilty on three counts.
"Mr. Tyson, who is 25 years old, was convicted of raping a young Rhode Island woman who was here as a contestant in the Miss Black America pageant, the major feature of an annual cultural festival known as the Indiana Black Expo.
- NY Times
I recommend to all your audience, Mr. D.H., that they read Sonja Steptoe's analysis (Sports Illustrated designated reporter/analyst) of the Tyson rape case. He brutalized an 18 year old Honor's Student, Sunday School Teacher (she spends some of her free time caring for retarded kids) and Miss Black America Beauty Contestant. BTW, Steptoe is a graduate of Duke's Law School and was recently appointed by President Obama as the Census Bureau's Associate Director. She is Black, and I might also add...she obviously has integrity
It is quite obvious that I have no compassion for the circumstances which Tyson delivered unto himself. His past remains for me to be a clear cut abomination. Let me refer you to his "Timeline" in which his violation of women (deviate sexual conduct) are plentiful and his after hour exploits against civilians are well documented (I lost count on the total for both of them). http://boxing.about.com/od/records/a/tyson_timelin
One must also ask the following to your position on Tyson's cultural significance. Is he immortalized by our Nation? Was he held in high regard for his contribution to humanity on political, cultural and racial issues? Invited for a tour of the White House? Awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom (highest award given to a USA civilian)?
In my neighborhood, Metro Chicago-west side, he would be shunned, dismissed; persona non-grata.
And the Black community...was he valued for representing Black Culture? Ask your Auntie about his contribution here, ("I want to eat your children"). Would she demand her progeny study his character traits and mental abilities? If you don't have an Auntie, then ask your Black neighbor about this issue. No doubt of mine that you'll get the door slammed in your face: quite hard, every time.
No response from D.H. on any of the above. This is the crescendo to his Symphony of Delusion. Reticent once again, unable to distance himself from the Washington accuser (unsubstantiated) of the earlier "cry rape" report. Tyson, D.H., and the reclusive accuser are men without honor; the trio being crude, vulgar and impudent.
Why can't D.H. use sound reasoning...
Tyson wasted his talent. If CUS D'Amato (adopted Tyson and became his mentor and manager) were able to see him through the tough times, then he may have been worthy of the "10 foot Tall" praises of him. However, he did not manifest Cus' will after his death, and his notoriety is that he became an Alpha-Male "wannabee" who was banished from the Wolfpack in 1990.
Cus may have been able to bring Tyson to the Pinnacle. I like to refer to this mentorship as the "Italian Influence" which history will show that many a GREAT SPORTSMAN AND TEAM have benefited from. Let's take a look at the following...
Tony La Russa
...certainly Mr. Cus D'Amato
He may have been able to bring the class, superior motivation, spirit and the tactics and strategies (these are the "Intangible Strengths") that would have brought Mike through the "Abyss " of the Douglas and Holyfield disasters (maybe even kept him out of jail) and extended his dominance into the '90's.
Pity that Mike did not manifest Cus' will after his death. Unfortunately, he came up short in that regard. I really wish it were otherwise. Had he kept his nose clean, respected others as he should have and performed to his potential we would have another "American Icon." A waist of talent, and a lesson for us all.