Is Mike Tyson Tailor Made for George Foreman ?

Discussion in 'Classic Boxing Forum' started by MarkusFlorez99, Feb 18, 2021.

  1. William Walker

    William Walker Boxing Addict Full Member

    Apr 9, 2020
    I actually think Mike might give George a harder time than that, but Mike is a bobber and a weaver, and I think bobbing and weaving is an invitation to a knockout against George Foreman.
  2. KidDynamite

    KidDynamite Boxing Addict banned Full Member

    Sep 16, 2012
    Mike would get tagged by uppercuts ... Even in his prime years he was vulnerable to uppercuts ... He would have a difficult time against young Foreman who had a brutal uppercut and would likely push him into punching range ...
  3. swagdelfadeel

    swagdelfadeel Boxing Junkie Full Member

    Jul 30, 2014
    You mean better than a '73 Frazier. ;)
  4. he grant

    he grant Historian/Film Maker Full Member

    Jul 15, 2008
    Very likely too quick.
    moneytheman12 likes this.
  5. KernowWarrior

    KernowWarrior Bob Fitzsimmons much bigger brother. Full Member

    Jul 12, 2012
    Well Tyson sure would not scare Foreman that is a definite, can you imagine the staredown between them at refs instructions just before opening bell.

    I believe a prime George Foreman might have exposed the mental and testicular fortitude fragility of Tyson.

    One area in favour of Tyson was his speed, but i don't think the wrecking ball that is Tyson would fell Foreman

    I would have happily paid to watch them lock horns in their prime
  6. Glass City Cobra

    Glass City Cobra Boxing Addict Full Member

    Jan 6, 2017
    Who did Tyson ever push back? And with those short arms would that even be practical? Foreman never got pushed back in his entire life. Tyson couldn't push back Holyfield and constantly got tied up. Even in Tyson's prime, Smith outwrestled, clinched, and pushed Tyson back with ease. That was actually one of his biggest weaknesses: The "silent agreement" to just let guys reset and frame him if it got too close and ugly. He rarely resisted.

    Sometimes it is better to do that to save energy, but a fighter like Foreman isn't pushing and grabbing to stall or survive, he's doing it to walk you into shots and keep you at the end of his long arms. Tyson would be better off using his head movement and excellent pivoting/weight shifting to get around all those thick vines trying to wrap him up, not fighting fire with fire and attempting to push Foreman back which would be stupid. Fight would be over in 3 rounds if he did that.
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  7. ironchamp

    ironchamp Boxing Addict Full Member

    Sep 5, 2004
    I actually think it's the other way around. Sure George Foreman is big, and yes he's strong and has crushing power. We are all familiar with his attributes. None of them, however, have ever been a prerequisite for beating Mike Tyson.

    Here's the thing, Joe Frazier is often brought up as a benchmark on how Mike Tyson would fare against George Foreman without taking into account that both Joe and Mike have very different comfort zones. Joe likes to fight in a phone booth, while Mike likes to fight in a closet. There is a reason why Frazier was able to beat Muhammad Ali and give him 3 tough fights while being totally ineffective against George Foreman unable to win a single round in 2 fights. Whereas Tyson would likely beat George Foreman but may not experience similar success against Muhammad Ali.

    Frazier is most effective when he fights inside; that worked very well against Ali because it made him uncomfortable; it took away his space and kept him on his toes and it forced him to fight. Foreman didn't allow Joe to do that; he constantly shoved or twisted him "into place" to keep him where he wants him so he could clobber him with impunity. Joe would make a concerted effort to get close but George would repeat the tactic to much success.

    They fought mostly at mid range and Joe, out of his comfort zone against a bigger and stronger foe, offered very little variety in terms of punch selection. He was unable to counter effectively because the only thing that he threw was a left hook and jab. But mostly a left hook. The first fight he threw less than 3 right hands total in the entire fight (body or head). He never really presented George a varied resistance so Foreman was able to gain confidence against a surprisingly predictable Frazier.

    A young Mike Tyson is a different animal. Where Joe can be a notoriously slow starter, Tyson is the complete opposite. He will start fast and he will give George a lot more to think about with his punch selection. There's no doubt in my mind that Foreman would try employ the same tactics and try to push Mike off or try to twist him into place. Thing was Tyson was far better off the cuff (mostly due to his hand speed and explosiveness) than Frazier was in timing his opponents. While Frazier tended to rely on his erratic head movement to time his opponents, Foreman was able to neutralize this by pushing him off forcing him to reset. Tyson's more varied attack and sharp counters would present a different challenge that would keep George on the back foot not only because the tempo of the fight would be a bit faster from the outset but because he's far more likely to land with better accuracy. In the end, it will come down to Tyson's ability to get off first and counter effectively with punishing blows. This would be the decisive factor.

    Let's not forget that George Foreman, despite being an Olympic Gold Medalist, despite sporting a 37-0 record with 34 KOs (the majority of which came inside of 4 rounds) conventional wisdom STILL placed him as 4-1 underdog against Joe Frazier. While the odds seemed foolish in the aftermath, the rationale was actually quite sound. And while Frazier was unable to do it, Tyson would have been the man to pull it off.

    Tyson KO inside 5 rounds.
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2021
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  8. RulesMakeItInteresting

    RulesMakeItInteresting Boxing Addict Full Member

    Mar 23, 2019
    Exactly, my friend.
    swagdelfadeel likes this.
  9. BlackCloud

    BlackCloud I detest the daily heavyweight threads Full Member

    Nov 22, 2012

    PhillyPhan69 and swagdelfadeel like this.
  10. swagdelfadeel

    swagdelfadeel Boxing Junkie Full Member

    Jul 30, 2014
    Is the O.P IMOJL?
  11. BlackCloud

    BlackCloud I detest the daily heavyweight threads Full Member

    Nov 22, 2012
    Time will tell....
    I had my suspicions when he joined and immediately bumped an old Lamotta thread.

    Could be wrong but we will see.
    PhillyPhan69 and swagdelfadeel like this.
  12. swagdelfadeel

    swagdelfadeel Boxing Junkie Full Member

    Jul 30, 2014
    Do you know what he was booted for by any chance? Not that I'm complaining. Guy was a nuisance. A racist, pedophilic, confederate sympathizer, and holocaust supporter.
  13. The Long Count

    The Long Count Boxing Junkie Full Member

    Oct 8, 2013
    Mike Tyson wasn't tailor made for anyone.
    ironchamp likes this.
  14. BlackCloud

    BlackCloud I detest the daily heavyweight threads Full Member

    Nov 22, 2012
    No idea bud.
    swagdelfadeel likes this.
  15. Glass City Cobra

    Glass City Cobra Boxing Addict Full Member

    Jan 6, 2017
    Your arguments do make sense. There are only a few problems:

    -Frazier wasn't the only short aggressive fighter Foreman fought. Foreman's brother did an interview a year ago and explained that the management mostly picked guys like Scrap Iron Johnson, Ted Gullick, and George Chuvalo was all in preparation for Frazier since he was the champion in Ali's absence as Foreman moved up the ranks. He said that if Ali was still champ they would have choosen guys like Ellis who were more of the stick and move type. If the champion is the short aggressive pressure fighting type there is no point in fighting a bunch of guys who throw jabs and use their feet.

    By fighting Johnson, Gullick, and Chuvalo, Foreman had already mastered being able to neutralize shorter aggressive opponents. That's the real reason why the Frazier fight was so "easy" because he had basically spent the majority of his career facing guys that had some stylistic similarities to Frazier already and many of his sparring partners were like that too. It certainly helped that, as you pointed out, Frazier wasn't exactly difficult to figure out. What you saw is what you got with Frazier.

    -The point of all that is that it wasn't that Frazier was "tailor made" for Foreman, it's that Foreman's management and trainers tailored Foreman for Frazier. Even later in his career beyond the Frazier fight Foreman feasted on short aggressive guys like Scott Ledoux, Bert Cooper, Qawi, etc. I'm only referencing Cus D'Amato's quote about no short swarmer being able to beat Foreman because it's relevant here. He knew what that team was doing and saw how he picked Frazier apart. It wasn't due to just raw talent or Frazier just coincidentally being a bad match.

    -Having said that, you're right, Frazier and Tyson did have some differences. Frazier liked staying on his opponent like glue and breaking them down while Tyson needed a little more space to use his head movement and pivoting. The problem is, whether you are up close or at mid range, weaving your head around and pressing forward leaves you vulnerable to uppercuts. Tony Tucker knew this and that's why he chose to throw one and nailed Tyson in their fight. Douglas knew this and that's why he nailed Tyson with uppercuts. Even the rock-headed Razor Ruddock knew this and chose to focus on using the "smash" uppercut because in his own words "I had a guy who in front of me who had a tight defense like armor. I needed to penetrate that armor by going up the middle as he came forward". Old, past his prime Larry Holmes knew the uppercut was the answer and was astute enough to go for it but his arm tragically got caught in the ropes. Or you can look at Ali vs Frazier and see Ali attempting to use the uppercut. Everyone and their grandma knows the uppercut is a good punch to use against a short aggressive guy using head movement.

    So to sum it up, in my personal opinion: it doesn't really matter if Tyson fights at close range or mid range. Tyson still has short arms and a short stature. Tyson cannot fight backing up, nor can he get on his toes and use lateral movement. Unless Tyson can blitz Foreman and empty clip after clip on him from the opponent bell while simultaneously getting around Foreman's looping hooks and uppercuts, he is going to get nailed by an uppercut at some point and he will be in serious trouble. Foreman is exceptionally good at neutralizing the offense of short aggressive guys in general, not just Frazier. And I really don't see Tyson being able to keep Foreman on the back foot. That never happened in more than 70 fights and he fought guys who hit even harder than Tyson. He would need to land quite a few blistering combinations to stop Foreman from advancing, that is if he can even get himself into range to unload without being shoved back, pivoted, thrown off center, or running into a looping uppercut or hook. You are also forgetting Foreman's pulverizing jab and parrying ability. He may grab Tyson's arms before Tyson's arms even fully extend since Foreman's arms are much longer and he stick them out often. By no means would this be a cut and dry fight. Tyson could win but it would be quite the task and a stylistic nightmare. Tyson would be like a solider running through a field of land mines below and random shots firing from above.
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