Exclusive Interview: Mike Tyson Part 2

By G. Leon


Exclusive Interview: Mike Tyson Part 2

"It's like a big nightmare, but I'm not blaming anyone but myself."

GL: Everybody makes mistakes Mike, you just can't let the mistakes make you.

Mike Tyson: "I'm just a shell of myself. I'm not even 10% of the man I used to be. And that's just real, so you put it down. I'm not a weak man. I'm going to complain, but then I'm going to come back like a ferocious wolverine. Right now I'm weak, but I'll recuperate and I'll be just as successful in any other endeavor as I was with boxing. I just have to get well emotionally. Right now I'm taking an emotional beating like no other."

GL: Would you be feeling this way if you would have blasted McBride out in the first couple of rounds?

Mike Tyson: "I don't know. I didn't want to fight. I'm just trying to find myself. I believed that I was still a fighter, but I'm just not. I've changed in such a dramatic way that it's tremendously frightening."

GL: Hindsight is always 20-20. When we spoke after the Danny Williams fight and conducted that powerful conference call interview with Shelly Finkel, Ted Watley and the two of us, you made it perfectly clear that you don't have the desire to fight. Back then you told me, "I lost that shit, I have no desire to get in there and leave the ring a bloody mess". In hindsight, do you feel that you weren't emotionally ready to return to the ring against McBride or anyone else until you found the desire to fight?

Mike Tyson: "I'm just washed up man, that's all. It is what it is."

GL: Would you have returned so soon after the Williams fight if you didn't suffer from these financial difficulties?

Mike Tyson: "I don't know what I would have done, I'm just living in the clouds. It's like a big nightmare, but I'm not blaming anyone but myself. I just can't believe when I wake up in the morning, this is what it is.  The family is gone, everything is gone. Somebody else in the house. My whole family tree was obliterated by me. Isn't that crazy?"

GL: How did you do that Mike?

Mike Tyson: "By not being a responsible father or husband and fooling around by being a ridiculous child. Just inappropriate behavior. When people are with me, there comes a time where they can't take no more so they just bounce."

GL: After this 20 year twister, do you feel like an old 39?

Mike Tyson: "I feel like a walking corpse. I'm going to see what can be done about my IRS problem and do some traveling to find myself because I'm very lost, very lost. I feel like someone just dropped me on my head somewhere and I feel extremely out of place. I feel like some android, I don't know where I should go, but I should get lost and go somewhere like China or something and just live life. Life is unpredictable and you have to appreciate it. But it's incredible that I'm gone. But after all these things happened, and everything I've done, I wish I would have had a family around me."

GL: Is that family structure something you hope to experience after you find yourself emotionally?

Mike Tyson: "Naw, that's a wrap. I'm finished I have no desire for that."

GL: But you just said that out of everything you've done, you wish you had a family around you.

Mike Tyson: "Because I wasn't worthy of it Greg. I wasn't loyal enough."

GL: Don't you feel that you've learned from those mistakes and can stay faithful to one woman?

Mike Tyson: "I'm just going to be alone for the rest of my life. I don't want to offend anyone, I'm just emotionally knocked out the water and I don't know what the deal is in that department."

GL: Shelly Finkel mentioned the possibility of a Mike Tyson movie, a book and things of that sort. Does that interest you?

Mike Tyson: "At first I was willing to, but I need to find out what's happening with me. I don't want to be no superstar. I single handedly fucked up my whole life. I have to be on a movie set now, I have to be in some strangers presence to talk abut a book. I got to move now. I'm in a different game now, I gotta start grinding and go back to doing what I do."

GL: At some point, there has to be a blueprint to establish the foundation of your future.

Mike Tyson: "As of yet, it's not available. I'm just out here. I'm just realizing that I don't have to get up and run in the morning. I don't have to jump in a hot whirlpool and get in the car. I'm in a world that I'm not accustomed to."

GL: Just because you've retired doesn't mean you can't run in the morning.

Mike Tyson: "I just have no desire Greg, I have to work on myself and get emotionally well."

GL: I want to see you get yourself together Mike, you're only 39, you're not 390, God willing you have another 39 years in front of you...

Mike Tyson: (cutting in) "I don't see that shit. I just never thought that the young girl that I knew would come pick me up off the floor. I treated that woman so horrific, I can't believe that she'd be there to pick me up off the floor. That's wild, it's like a movie and shit. Anything you could have done to a human being, I did to her and she was right there. When I broke my leg, she was right there with the doctors discussing the fractures and tears.

"I'm so proud of her and her diction and how she handled that situation. I never knew what I had until I lost it. This is one thing I bet you Cus hates me about, by losing Monica, that probably killed Cus more than anything. That was a good person right there, a general. Her resistance is impeccable and when she wants to take care of somebody that she cares about she's relentless. Whoever has her, has a warrior, a body guard. She'll give you her last drop of blood and she's more of a tiger than I can ever imagine to be.

"She's more of an animal in a positive perspective than I could have ever been when I was on top of the boxing world."

GL: You mentioned Cus, do you miss him most at times like this when you're going through emotional lows?

Mike Tyson: "I know the lessons. It's just that I've been behind my lessons for so long and I'm mentally weak. From lack of discipline and my nature, it set me up for the right hand of life and when that right hand hit me oh man, I'm still in pain right now. It's an incredible thing, it's going to have to be an incredible new journey after this for me to get over the game I've experienced."

GL: If Cus were here today what do you think he would want you to do at this point in your life?

Mike Tyson: "I don't know if I would in this particular situation at this point in my life. Right now I have no structure, I'm structureless and I have no one to blame but myself. I wish I could blame someone, but although others have contributed, I have to carry the weight of a fool alone."

GL: If you find yourself as well as you've taken responsibility for being in this position, I think you'll be just fine.

Mike Tyson: "Allow everyone to know that Mike Tyson wants to bury the hatchet with everyone, I'm not holding any grudges with any media villians like Larry Merchant and Teddy Atlas. I have no mean spirited feelings of aggression towards anyone. I'm too tired to have any aggression, I'm very simple and I'm happy. I'll be all good.

"I can't change anything that's happened, I just need to live my life as happy as I can before I die. I'm just glad I've experienced the experiences I've experienced in my 20 year career. I have regrets about the family situation, but other than that I have no regrets. I've enjoyed the boxing world for allowing me to be a part of this fraternity. Thank everyone for writing about me, putting me on television and helping me take care of my family, I'm very happy about that and being a part of this wonderful fraternity of boxing."

GL: I believe I speak for most of the boxing world and pretty much every boxing fan, that we want to still see you around in the sport in the years to come.

Mike Tyson: "I don't know brother, I just...

GL: (cutting in) I know that the boxing world would embrace you. Everyone in boxing would love to read your insight on certain fights and how you feel they'd play out. People would love to hear your analysis, but you have to want it.

Mike Tyson: "I have to get my nerve and confidence back. I lost a great deal of my confidence and my nerve and I need to go away and develop that again, and develop myself again as a person. I'm really clueless right now and I don't know what to do. I'm just going to hang out with my son. Time is the greater healer of all, I just hope it helps me before it's too late. Thanks for taking the time to speak with me Greg, I appreciate it.  Let the people know that I'm going to get well and I'll be back. Not boxing, but I'll be back and ready to deal with the world."


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