Does Roy Jones Jr. Have Mike Tyson Figured Out?
After years of people asking “what if”, answers will finally be given regarding a Mike Tyson v. Roy Jones Jr. fight. For Jones, this is a long time coming.
Jones (66-9) will be facing off against Tyson (50-6, 2 NC) in an exhibition bout on September 12. A multi-divisional champion, Jones missed out on an opportunity to face Tyson. Now years later, Jones is ready for his opportunity to shine.
“Too hard to resist, too incredible to resist, too much of a blessing to resist” Jones stated to MMA Junkie regarding him accepting a bout with Tyson. “When I won the heavyweight title, I told them the only other person I would fight as a heavyweight was Mike Tyson. If Mike Tyson didn’t want to fight, I was going back down to light heavyweight. From what I got … was that he was through with boxing, he didn’t want to box no more, so I left and went back to light heavyweight. I didn’t stick around, but to have him come out now and say, ‘OK, I want to come back. Guess what? You wanted it, you get your opportunity.’ I’m like, ‘Yes.’”
According to Metro, Jones was supposed to fight Tyson at one point. A $40 million guaranteed deal, Jones rejected the offer. Later on, Jones went from light heavyweight, where he became a WBA, WBC, IBF, IBO, IBA, and WBF Light-Heavyweight Champion, to heavyweight, where he won the WBA Heavyweight Title from John Ruiz. He was hoping to face Tyson but he retired while also becoming bankrupt.
Making his professional debut in 1989, Jones won the IBF Middleweight Title in 1993 against Bernard Hopkins. He then moved up in weight to light-heavyweight. “Captain Hook” became the first middleweight champion to win heavyweight gold. He ended his career on a four-fight win streak in the cruiserweight division in 2018.
In his prime, Tyson had the physical and psychological advantage over his opponents. With 44 wins via knockout, Tyson dominated the 1980s and ’90s. Jones believes the same guy will be appearing when they fight, even if he is a little bit older.
“The first three rounds, he’s gonna be dangerous,” Jones went on to say. “He was like that in his prime. He’s like that now. He’s a guy that can knock you out from Round 1 to Round 12, so in the eighth round he’ll still be dangerous. But if you can get the fatigue factor to set in, then you got a better chance. So for me, I got to try and work off the second half of the fight more so than I work off the first half.”
“Mike knows one way – kill. That’s all he knows. Destruction and destroy. That’s all he understands, so my mindset is I better be ready when I go in between those ropes. One thing my dad’s taught me, he said, ‘If you’re going to kill a fly, you kill a fly with an axe, not a fly swatter.’”
The fight between Tyson and Jones will take place inside the Dignity Health Sports Arena in California. The eight-round fight will be on PPV and Triller.