30 June: Michael Gerald Tyson an American boxer
Michael Gerald Tyson (30 June 1966) an American boxer who became the youngest heavyweight champion in history, at age 20.
Michael Gerald Tyson was born on 30 June 1966, in New York. He attended the Tryon School for Boys in Johnstown, New York. Bobby Stewart, a former boxer and a counselor at juvenile detention center, noticed his skills in boxing.
Cus D’Amato’ trained Tyson for the sport. Under Amato’s full-time custody, the aspiring boxer had a rigorous training schedule. By day, he went to Catskill High School, by night he practiced in the ring. However, he never graduated from the school and left as a junior.
In 1981 and 1982, he won gold medals at the Junior Olympics by defeating Joe Cortez and Kelton Brown, respectively.
During the trials, he fought the eventual heavyweight gold medalist Henry Tillman twice, and he lost both times.
On 6 March 1985, he fought Hector Mercedes in his professional debut. He won it by knockout in the first round.
Tyson won 26 of the 28 fights he took part in in his first year, 16 of them in the first round. Tyson, who was on his way up the ladder, fought journeymen and borderline contenders like James Tillis, David Jaco, Jesse Ferguson, Mitch Green and Marvis Frazier.
After Tyson’s back-to-back wins, the media hailed him as the next heavyweight champ. While his career was going well, Tyson faced turmoil off the ring when his buddy, philosopher, and guide Amato went up to heaven.
Tyson’s first fight on television was against Jesse Ferguson. In the fifth round, he broke his opponent’s nose. Tyson won in the sixth round.
At the age of 20, Tyson won a record 22 consecutive matches, 21 of them by knockout.
After a string of victories, he finally got his first title fight against Trevor Berbick for the World Boxing Council (WBC) heavyweight title. He became the youngest heavyweight champion in history on 22 November 1986, when he knocked out Berbick in the second round.
Tyson started acting after he retired from boxing. With the movie ‘The Hangover’ in 2009, he made his big screen debut.
His story was also the subject of a documentary by James Toback. Along with director Spike Lee, Tyson brought his show to the stage, “Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth”. Tyson’s life was depicted in the show.
He has written two memoirs with Larry Sloman: ‘Undisputed Truth’ (2013) and ‘Iron Ambition: My Life with Cus D’Amato’ (2017).
Mike Tyson started the Mike Tyson’s Legends Only League in 2020. It gives retired pro athletes a chance to compete in their sport.
Awards and Achievements
He holds the record for being the youngest heavyweight boxing champion ever. At the time, he was only 20 years old.
Tyson has the fastest KO (Knock-Out) in juniors at 8 seconds.
Tyson won the Ring magazine Prospect of the Year award in 1985
He won the Ring Magazine Fighter of the Year award in 1986 and 1988 for his outstanding performance in the ring.
Tyson was named BBC Sports Personality of the Year Overseas in 1989.
Tyson was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2012 for his achievements in professional boxing. Also, he’s in the International Boxing Hall of Fame and the World Boxing Hall of Fame.