Mike Tyson has made a mockery of the American boxing officials overseeing his fight with a declaration he will “search and destroy” Roy Jones Jr.
The 54-year-old has told TMZ he is looking to knock his opponent out cold when they face off on September 13 (AEST) in Los Angeles — just days after his fight with 51-year-old former world champion Jones Jr was claimed to be a glorified sparring session by the officials that have sanctioned the bout.
California State Athletic Commission executive director Andy Foster told BoxingScene.com last week that he has spoken to both Tyson and Jones Jr to demand both men take it easy on each other when they step into the ring.
Foster said Tyson’s first sanctioned fight since losing to Kevin McBride in 2005 has been given permission to go ahead — but only under the strict rules that make are designed to take the heat out of the contest.
Tyson has already declared his intent to disregard those rules.
Mike Tyson interviewed by TMZ.Source:YouTube
In a doorstop interview with TMZ, he said: “This is search and destroy and I’m looking forward to recapturing my glory.
When asked if he is going to knock Jones out, Tyson said: “If the opportunity comes, I’m always looking for it.”
His comment comes after it was last week revealed the fight with Jones will be an eight-round exhibition that will not involve a panel of judges or headgear.
Foster explained the rules were designed to protect Tyson and Jones Jr — who are fighting almost 20 years after they were first reported to be on a collision course in the heavyweight division.
He revealed Tyson and Jones Jr were told in a Zoom meeting that they must hold back.
“I wanted to have their assurances that they understand, I don’t care if they spar,” he said.
“I don’t care if they work. They are world-class athletes, even still.
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“They have a right to earn, and all these types of things. They’re about the same age. We can’t mislead the public as to this is some kind of real fight. They can get into it a little bit, but I don’t want people to get hurt. They know the deal.
“It’s an exhibition. They can exhibit their boxing skills, but I don’t want them using their best efforts to hurt each other. They’re going to spar hard, but they shouldn’t be going for a knockout. This isn’t a record-book type of fight. This is not world-championship boxing right now. It’s not what this is. People shouldn’t be getting knocked out. The public can see what kind of shape Roy and Mike are still in.”
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