Taught by the late great Cus D’Amato in the early 1980s, Mike Tyson was bred into a destructive machine that was eventually given an ‘Iron’ monicker.
Tyson blasted his way through amateur and pro careers, obliterating everything he touched until he became the world’s youngest heavyweight champion.
Mike Tyson record
Beating Floyd Patterson’s previous record, Tyson wrote his history. He subsequently ruled over the division with contempt for five years.
So, how did he manage to get such force into his punches? – He opened up on his secrets during an emotional interview with Sugar Ray Leonard.
The 80s icon, who Tyson admitted he worshipped back in the day, was on hand as the New Yorker explained the method.
“I learned from the master, Cus D’Amato. He was my mentor. He was throwing punches, throwing combinations. And the art of punching is when you can throw two punches that sound like one,” said Tyson.
How to throw a knockout punch
“Anyone here who understands the art of fighting knows what I’m saying. Two punc hes that sound like one. Do you know how magnificent your punches have to be to sound like that?
“The ultimate knockout puncher,” he added.
Leonard then quipped: “The ultimate knockout punch. Don’t get hit by that!”
Tyson and Leonard’s chat, released on February 27th as part of Mike’s ‘Hotboxin’ Podcast’ series, has already gone down in history as one of the great fight conversations of all time.
It features a quote from Tyson that will forever be linked to his post-fight career persona.
Struggling to deal with the viciousness inside him during his peak, Tyson could declare his ‘Iron’ Mike personality ‘dead’ in later years.
But Tyson still fears that one day ‘Iron’ Mike will come back. And with it, ‘unleash the hell’ he tries so hard to suppress.
It’s a fantastic insight into the man, who is a much-loved part of the sport today.
Fans are lucky to get such unbridled access to Tyson as he sits down with a smoke in hand to give everything he did in the ring on the microphone.
If you get a spare 85 minutes, do yourself a favor and listen to the whole thing.