How good was mike tyson?

Discussion in 'Classic Boxing Forum' started by SonnyListon>, May 15, 2024.

How good was mike tyson?(H2H)

  1. Top 1

    3 vote(s)
  2. Top 3

    3 vote(s)
  3. Top 5

    4 vote(s)
  4. Top 10

    39 vote(s)
  5. Top 20

    7 vote(s)
  6. Top 20+

    0 vote(s)
  1. mr. magoo

    mr. magoo VIP Member Full Member

    Jan 3, 2007
  2. The Long Count

    The Long Count Boxing Junkie Full Member

    Oct 8, 2013
    Tyson had an incredible ceiling. But his prime was very short. You had to be there in the late 80s no fighter since has captured the public the same way. Definitely a comet so to speak.
    Kid Bacon likes this.
  3. The Cryptkeeper

    The Cryptkeeper Well-Known Member Full Member

    May 9, 2023
    Do you think he captured the public because we were all crying out for a new heavyweight hero given how long it had been since the golden era?

    No doubt he had a fan friendly fight style but he also benefited in my view, from the starvation of boxing fans longing for the glory days gone.
    Smoochie and Kid Bacon like this.
  4. Seamus

    Seamus Proud Kulak Full Member

    Feb 11, 2005
    Most great heavies in the smaller, aggressive mold had short primes... Dempsey, Marciano, Frazier come to mind. Mike did a lot with his 4 great years.
  5. Oddone

    Oddone Bermane Stiverne's life coach. Full Member

    Aug 18, 2019
    My observations on Tyson being rated see two distinct groups.

    1. Casual fans: A lot of people who grew up watching him fight, many of which became boxing fans because of him, see Tyson as this unstoppable juggernaut who beat everyone in a round while destroying the heavyweight division. Listen to them long enough and you’ll think he knocked out Godzilla, ate people’s souls and was the pinnacle of everything great.

    These people are wrong.

    2. Boxing Purests. These people saw Tyson as a capable but limited fighter who was exposed the second anyone stood up to him. They will point to Tokyo Douglas and say he was still the same man who captured the title at twenty. He wasn’t. They point to Holyfield and say Tyson would always lose to this style or that type of boxer.

    These people are wrong.

    The truth lay somewhere in the middle. Simply put Mike Tyson was a machine.

    Tyson and Cus D’Amato talked about him becoming the youngest champion ever. That was the goal. When he did that, which was after Cus died, he and Jimmy Jacobs then created a new goal of holding all three major belts. When he did that Jimmy Jacobs died and he had no more goals. Nothing new and challenging to motivate him. Tyson lost his fire.

    Tyson was a machine. He fought often because the people who knew him, knew it was the best way to keep him ring ready and out of trouble. If you keep the machine in use, maintain it well and make sure nothing gets stuck in the gears it works well. If you don’t, the machine breaks down.

    Once the people who maintained the machine Tyson were gone or dead, it broke.

    Having said that, when the machine was at peak performance top ten is fair.
  6. Saintpat

    Saintpat Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    Jun 26, 2009
    Actually that honor belongs to Muhammad Ali, and his LIFE ended eight years ago.

    As for Tyson, he has a fight coming up so his boxing career hasn’t ended.
  7. ThatOne

    ThatOne Boxing Addict Full Member

    Jan 13, 2022
    He was a cultural phenomenon. That's one criterion and that's why he's in my top ten. Another poster asked what he did to justify being one. He was seen as a juggernaut.
  8. The Long Count

    The Long Count Boxing Junkie Full Member

    Oct 8, 2013
    I think it was mostly his style and athletic ability. The sport went from Ali and Holmes for a 20 year run of boxer types back to an executioner destroyer. So I think that did play a part. He was the biggest athlete in all of American sports. For 2 years. Bigger than Jordan and Bo Jackson at the time. Jordan didn’t take the mantle until after Tokyo and Tyson’s private life demise.
    Kid Bacon and The Cryptkeeper like this.
  9. Seamus

    Seamus Proud Kulak Full Member

    Feb 11, 2005
    I can stack Dempsey's and Tyson's resumes side by side and it isn't even close. Mike was beating huge, skilled dudes while Jack was beating hype jobs, rodeo clowns, light heavies and breadline rejects.
    shottylad, MaccaveliMacc and Pat M like this.
  10. Anubis

    Anubis Well-Known Member Full Member

    Jun 14, 2008
    In a pick em with Frazier, I'd typically tend to go with the intangibles, and I can't see where any of those favor Tyson. Frazier WILL go down early, but he ALWAYS got up! (Holyfield was only stopped by Bowe and Toney, but NEVER counted out.)
  11. The Cryptkeeper

    The Cryptkeeper Well-Known Member Full Member

    May 9, 2023
    Rodeo clowns. :biggrin:
  12. HistoryZero26

    HistoryZero26 Member Full Member

    Jan 6, 2024
    I have him 6th of the top 90s HWs H2H. Don't pick him to beat Lewis, Bowe, Foreman, Moorer or Holyfield. All of these guys beat someone in that group Tyson beat none. So being 6th in the 2nd or 3rd best era is probably outside the top 20. Too many great HWs and Tysons career was pretty short. Tyson dominated the late 80s though but besides Foreman the aformentioned guys are from his generation while Tyson was mainly beating guys from the previous one. While I don't buy the whole idea 80s Tyson does better in the 90s thing I think its possible he beats Holyfield another day. But I dont rank Holyfield particuarly high.

    Given his size Tyson might be the best of that group P4P. Hes a 5 10 guy who dominated HW for a few years. But being better P4P doesn't make you a better HW.
  13. Jakub79

    Jakub79 Member Full Member

    Mar 3, 2024
    I agree with many of the posts here. Personally, I think his CV is greatly underrated for several reasons - the most important of which is the scale of his decline. Even Jones didn't fall as spectacularly as Tyson, and both of them seemed absolutely untouchable at one point. In the 1980s, Tyson had a record of 37-0 and 10 wins in championship fights, in the 1990s he was 8-3 and won two - poor - championship fights. The 1990s were a huge, huge hype when Tyson came back and an even bigger disappointment when he lost to Holy, to Lewis, Williams, McBride. Actually, after 1991 he didn't beat anyone great, but each time his fight was a great event. I'm sure that if he loses now to Jake Paul, there will be people who will say - Mike was overrated and Jake Paul is proof that he would lose to young Holmes . Perhaps Teddy Atlas will call Jake 6 Tyson's real rival in his career... Tyson is simply associated with terrible disappointment, fall, embarrassment and people like to follow the beaten path. Another thing is journalism. There is no boxer who has offended more boxing people than Tyson. Bert Sugar absolutely hated him. All this affects the rating, you can laugh, but I have often seen on social media where more than one fighter gained more recognition after an interview than after a good fight. Lennox Lewis is the PR champion, Tyson is on the other side. He will always be rated lower because of what a jerk he is. I also once valued him less, the more I knew about boxing and the more fights I watched, the more Tyson gained in my opinion. I think that the top 3 in HW may be justified for him, but if someone perceives him through the prism of the 90s, he can easily be thrown out of the top 50.
  14. Smoochie

    Smoochie Usyk and Inoue tha goats Full Member

    May 16, 2024
    Top 15, too much of a "what-If" in his prime
  15. ThatOne

    ThatOne Boxing Addict Full Member

    Jan 13, 2022
    I have him in my top ten. His biggest fans and detractors make him hard to objectively rate.
    MaccaveliMacc likes this.