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The History of the Match

Mike Tyson in April 2020 through Youtube had announced his desire to get back in shape to organize some match-performances. From that moment on, through his social profiles, he showed short videos of himself during training, definitively declaring that he was back, declaring in a post “I’m Back”. Roy Jones Jr. after the last fight of his career held on February 8, 2018, in Florida against Scott Sigmon, beaten by unanimous decision of the judges, had announced the retirement, although he left an opportunity to return only to meet with Anderson Silva UFC champion.

The many videos posted on social by “Iron Mike” have attracted many offers from former Australian sportsmen who became boxers like Barry Hall and Paul Gallen. Tyson and his agent, in addition to refusing these proposed matches, called these proposals “an insult to boxing”. The first proposal that attracted the attention of the media was that made by Evander Holyfield (historical opponent of the New York boxer, who during the meeting on June 28, 1997 lost part of his ear following a bite of “Iron Mike “) through an online video. After a few weeks not finding the economic agreement to formalize the meeting, on July 23, 2020 it was announced that Roy Jones Jr. had signed a contract to face Tyson on September 12. The date has been postponed to November 28, to boost revenue for the event. In recent days it had been made public that the two boxers had agreed on the validity of the match; whatever the outcome of the match would have been, it would not have affected the records of the two athletes, thus making the match “only” a spectacle, even if when two boxers of this level go up in the ring, it is never “just” fun.

The place chosen for the meeting is a temple of American sport, that is, the STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, California (Los Angeles Lakers arena, 17 times NBA champions).

Data and information on boxers

This section contains some data relating to the physical characteristics of boxers and their results in their careers.

Mike Tyson born in New York on June 30, 1966 (54 years old), showed up for tonight’s match weighing 220 lb (99 kg and 800 g) for a height of 5 ft 10 in (178 cm).

During his career he filled his palmares with 56 official matches of which 50 won (44 for Knock Out) and 6 lost (5 for Knock Out), with these results he earned the titles of:

  • WBC title;
  • 1987-1990 WBA Title – Heavyweight;
  • 1986-1990 IBF World Title – Heavyweight;
  • 1988-1990 The Ring Title – Heavyweight;
  • 1996 WBA World Title – Heavyweight.

Roy Jones Jr. American (naturalized Russian) born in Pensacola, a small town in Florida on January 16, 1969 (51 years old), entered the match with a weight of 210 lb (95 kg and 250 g) for a height of 5 ft 11 in. During his intense and long career he has led a total of 75 matches, 66 won (47 by knock out), 9 lost (5 by knock out), obtaining many trophies:

  • 1993-1994 IBF World Title – Middleweight;
  • 1994-1996 IBF World Title – Super Middleweight;
  • 1996-2004 WBC World Title – Light Heavyweight;
  • 1999-2004 IBF World Title – Light Heavyweight;
  • 2000-2004 IBO World Title – Light Heavyweight;
  • 2003-2004 WBA World Title – Heavyweight.

Match Analysis

In this section of the article the match will be analyzed, in particular in this first part the data collected from the notational analysis carried out live during the match between Mike Tyson and Roy Jones will be reported, which ended in a draw according to the result announced by the judges.

Mike used his left a lot more during the match. Roy Jones is more mobile on the trunk but Tyson gave the impression of being much in better shape and continued to hit the opponent even at the sound of the bell, immediately apologizing to the opponent. The match was very intense, during the match he proved more powerful than the opponent and therefore also faster. Iron Mike showed a desire to prove he was still fit at the age of 54, in the fourth round Jones Jr managed to find a combination, but his opponent collected well. The meeting was intense for the whole duration, without sparing any blows, even if in the central rounds it was possible to see a decline in performance. The fifth round is the hardest fought, blow by blow, combination by combination, comparing power and speed. Iron Mike throughout the duration of the match tried to keep the center of the ring, especially in the fifth round, bringing the opponent to the corner, completing some combinations, and shows that despite being 54 years old he achieved an excellent level of performance. In this section of the article the match will be analyzed, in particular in this first part the data collected from the notational analysis carried out live during the match between Mike Tyson and Roy Jones will be reported, which ended in a draw according to the result announced by the judges.

During the eighth round, Tyson chases Jones, who tries to dodge the opponent’s combinations, at the sound of the bell the two boxers return to their corners, then greet each other in the center of the ring. Finally after a few minutes the judges announce the verdict, “match ended in a draw 76-76”.

As can be seen from table 3 of the fighting and non-fighting time, the effective fighting time was 11 minutes and 87 seconds, and the non-fighting time was 4 minutes and 13 seconds. These data show that the match was an intense match, with some decline in the central part of the match (during which the two boxers created many clinch situations to recover energy), to then conclude again with great intensity and exchanges of very powerful and quick shots.

The match ends with the two boxers leading the match to an end, going above expectations; there was a great comeback of two boxing champions, in particular Mike Tyson, who returned to the ring weighing less than 34 years ago when he became world champion. He was also very quick in combinations (considering his age), mobile on his legs, and obviously a very powerful, physical characteristic of Iron Mike.

Conclusion

The evening “Legends only League” ends with the perils of the two protagonists Tyson declares: “Okay so, I made a show: Roy collected well”. Jones: “I am not satisfied with the verdict, but I accept it: the important thing is to have given a show. I’m ready to do the match again, it was an honor to be punched by Mike”. Finally, Tyson: “Here it was not a question of fighting for a title but for a humanitarian purpose. I am happy to have had the opportunity to fight even if with different rules, and I reacted to Jones’s blows. ” Jones (who fought with the Lakers’ yellow and gold gloves, and with the numbers 8 and 24 in memory of Kobe Bryant) concludes: “Thanks to Kobe, I’m happy to be back here and I will continue. I love you Mike”.

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Edited by
Sport Scientist & Match Analyst
Alessandro Imbrogno

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