Ear is off the menu! Evander Holyfield, 59, SUCKS OUT over exhibition fight against longtime rival Mike Tyson, says ‘it’s too late’ for trilogy, a quarter of a century after infamous biting incident
- Evander Holyfield told TMZ it’s ‘too late’ for him to fight Mike Tyson again
- The 59-year-old was engaged in fruitless conversations at a Tyson exhibition in 2021
- The two fought twice in the 1990s, with Holyfield winning both matches
- The second fight was marred by Tyson’s disqualification for biting Holyfield’s ear
Mike Tyson is no longer getting a portion of Evander Holyfield’s ear.
After talks of a practice fight between the two quasi-retired rivals, 59-year-old Holyfield chooses common sense over a surefire reward against 56-year-old Tyson.
‘It’s too late,’ said Holyfield TMZadding: ‘I’m done now.’
The four-time heavyweight champion reportedly negotiated with Tyson’s camp in the spring of 2021, but the two sides were far apart over a potential stock market split. Kris Lawrence, Holyfield’s manager, told TMZ that “it seems like we’ve wasted our time.”
Still, the possibility of an exhibition between the two Hall of Famers persisted until Holyfield’s statement to TMZ.
Although Evander Holyfield (right) had previously considered an exhibition game against ex-rival Mike Tyson, the 59-year-old said it is now too late when asked about a possible trilogy.
Referee Lane Mills (L) intervenes as Evander Holyfield (R) reacts after Mike Tyson bit his ear in the third round of their WBA heavyweight championship fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena
(Left) Evander Holyfield looks on after being defeated by Vitor Belfort in the first round of an exhibition. (Right) Mike Tyson packs a punch in the fourth round against Roy Jones Jr. during Mike Tyson vs Roy Jones Jr. presented by Trill at Staples Center on November 28, 2020 in LA
Anyone who saw Holyfield lose an exhibition from former MMA star Vitor Belfort 11 months ago already knew he was done. The Georgia native received a first-round technical knockout and looked excited from the opening bell.
Tyson looked only slightly better in his senior circuit exhibition, battling for a draw against 51-year-old Roy Jones Jr.
He has flirted with the idea of fighting a much younger opponent, albeit an inexperienced one: YouTube star Jake Paul.
The Sun reported in January that the two sides were working on a deal that could bring in $50 million, but nothing has come to fruition.
Tyson and Holyfield have a distinct history, which made an exhibition between the two over-50s intriguing.
Referee Lane Mills (C) stops the fight in the third round while Evander Holyfield (R) holds his ear
Blood flows down his arm and chest as Evander Holyfield (R) has his ear examined by the ringside doctor on June 28, 1997 during his WBA heavyweight championship fight against Mike Tyson at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, NV. Holyfield won by third round disqualification after Tyson bit him
The two seemed destined to fight in the late 1980s and early 1990s when Holyfield, then a cruiserweight champion, was ruled into a heavyweight division by Tyson.
But that much-anticipated matchup was lost in 1990 when Tyson was upset in Tokyo by James ‘Buster’ Douglas, who went on to lose his titles to Holyfield in October 1990.
A poster for the ’97 Holyfield/Tyson rematch
Then, in 1991, Tyson was infamously convicted of rape in Indiana and remained in prison until 1995.
After several preliminary fights, Tyson and Holyfield finally met for the first of two fights in November 1996.
Tyson, though favourite, struggled against Holyfield and eventually lost due to an 11th round stoppage. He then complained of Holyfield’s headbutts – a problem that would reoccur in the 1997 rematch.
For nearly three rounds, Tyson would bite Holyfield’s left and right ears before being disqualified by Judge Mills Lane. Tyson later said he was taking revenge for Holyfield’s headbutts.
“I bit him because I wanted to kill him. I was really mad that my head got bumped and stuff,” Tyson told Fox News in 2020 to Jim Gray. “I really lost consciousness of the whole fight. It took me out of my battle plan and all.’
Boxer Mike Tyson looks at the ink on his hands after fingerprinting while booking at the City-County Building in Indianapolis, March 26, 1992, after being sentenced to six years in prison by Judge Patricia Gifford for rape and deviant behavior