The youngest boxer ever to win the Heavyweight Championship of the World.
“I came from Hell and every match I won was a step out of that world. Each victory would bring me closer to immortal glory.” These are the words of Mike Tyson, former heavyweight boxing champion. He’s part of an “old school” of fighters who fought whoever they could to get out of their state. Unlike many fighters today, Tyson was a boxer who carefully studied the boxing history in order to create his own.
Iron Mike Tyson was the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world who was the youngest fighter at 20 years, 4 months and 22 days to hold WBC, WBA and IBF heavyweight titles. Tyson was known for his incredible displays of power in the ring winning 12 fights by first-round knockouts. Most unanimously claim Tyson could easily have been the greatest boxer ever if his path hadn’t gone down a dark road.
Mike Tyson’s Impoverished Beginnings
Michael Gerard Tyson was born on June 30th, 1966 in Brooklyn, New York. Tyson only had one elder brother and sister. Although his biological father is registered as Purcell Tyson, Mike only knew Jimmy Kirkpatrick as his father, who frequently went to billiard halls, hung out on the streets and gambled not in accordance to U.S gambling laws. Living as a partner for years, Kirkpatrick left the family and later died in 1992.
• Mike Tyson grew up in the slums of Brownsville in Brooklyn, New York
• At the age of 13, Mike Tyson was arrested 38 times for petty crimes
• Tyson’s boxing abilities were discovered while in a detention center
The Tyson family lived in Bedford-Stuyvesant, a still middle class neighborhood at the time, until they financial situation declined heavily. They were forced to move to Brownsville when Tyson was 10. Tyson spent much of his time running around in the streets, getting into trouble and being involved in gang activity. He once ran a small crew of youngsters like himself who would rob people and steal from their homes.
Tyson’s abnormal large size, for his age, caused intimidation in many of the neighborhood kids. This unfortunately made him a constant target by those who insulted him for his high-pitched voice and lisp. Tyson had few outlets for his anger besides petty crime. One of these outlets was collecting pigeons. Collecting pigeons and training them to send messages was a urban subculture that Tyson still partakes in even to this day.
Mike Tyson suffered from common problems that affect many youths in high-crime areas. Tyson had few role models around him, except drug dealers and pimps. His mother Lorna had several friends, who were prostitutes visit her home. Tyson witnessed several men who had short-term relationships with his mother and the physical altercations that both parties would inflict on each other. Nobody involved in online sports betting in the U.S would ever predict Tyson could be champion.
From the Ashes of Chaos a Boxer is Forged
One time, a much larger youth pulled the head off from one of Tyson’s pigeon. The incident would ensue and became Tyson’s first known fight. Tyson soon gained a reputation for being able to fight although it was more out of sheer strength and anger than technical fighting skill. By the time Tyson was 13, he had been arrested 38 times. Before long, Tyson was sent to a juvenile detention center in Johnstown, New York.
While at the Tyron School for Boys, Tyson’s boxing potential was noticed by Bobby Stewart. The counselor and former boxer found serious promise in Tyson and trained him for a few months in exchange for Tyson’s effort to improve his behavior. Stewart would finally introduce Tyson to the legendary boxing trainer Cus D’Amato. The man who trained boxing legends Floyd Patterson and Jose Torres decided to train Tyson.
Upon leaving the detention center, D’Amato made arrangements with Lorna Tyson for her son stay with D’Amato during the week to train in his home in the Catskills while spending weekends with her. Upon agreement, Tyson moved to the Catskill and trained among a stable of fighters that D’Amato kept in his home. For the first time in his life, Tyson did chores, studied and regularly attended school.
Although Tyson found stability, a part of him always remained tied to his dark past. During the week Tyson had a normal life, but on the weekend he was back on the streets in Brooklyn doing the same things he did before he left. Tyson learned to have a dual lifestyle that would later haunt him for the rest of his life and ultimately lead him to his demise in the boxing world that would be well known in U.S gambling news.