Home Boxing News Drugs drove Mike Tyson to ring return against Roy Jones Jr

Drugs drove Mike Tyson to ring return against Roy Jones Jr

Mike Tyson. Photo credit: Fred Prouser/Reuters

Mike Tyson has revealed the circumstances that drove him to return to the ring.

The 54-year-old will climb back through the ropes to face fellow quinquagenarian Roy Jones Jr, 51, in an eight-round exhibition bout in Los Angeles on September 12.

Tyson hasn’t fought since being stopped in six rounds by Kevin McBride in Washington DC in 2005 while Jones Jr was last in action in February 2018 when he outpointed Scott Sigmon over 10 in Pensacola, Florida.

Former undisputed heavyweight champion Tyson said he was in a bad place in his life when the opportunity to fight again came up.

“At one time I was 90lbs overweight, I was doing bad, I was doing cocaine, I was drinking. I said, I need to stop me from being this way. I changed my whole life,” Tyson told TMZ.

“Eventually I got married, my life started to change, I started working out.

“My brother-in-law said: ‘Listen, I know you don’t wanna fight, but would you fight Bob Sapp? Somebody wants to offer you a lot of money to fight Bob Sapp.’

“I said, ‘get outta here, I told people I don’t fight no more.’ Then my mind went ‘ding!’

“What are the actual rules they want to fight under? Will they box me under the Marquis of Queensbury? They said yes and I said, yes I’ll fight him.

“I know Bob Sapp is very big, strong, but if he fights me under the boxing rules then I can handle him.

“I said yes, then for some reason it went from Bob Sapp, to somebody else, to this guy and now on 12 September it’s Roy Jones.

“I don’t know how this happened, I’m just very grateful I’m not living the life I was living before.”

Jones Jr, who defeated John Ruiz for the WBA heavyweight title in 2003, remains confident of winning the bout.

“If Mike doesn’t kill quick he’s fighting one of the smartest savviest guys to ever do the thing, if he don’t kill quick he’s in trouble,” he said.

“If you don’t kill right away what are you going to do? I seen all those smoking videos don’t think I don’t know what’s going on, I’m not stupid.

“I’m not going to try and go out there in the first round and take him out like I’m a fool. He’s still strong early, he’s still a strong lion.

“But I’ve got a cheetah’s mentality which means I’ve got to get quick. If he don’t kill me quick his ass belongs to me then.”