Two legendary boxing names will once again enter the ring this weekend when former champions Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr. meet in an 8-round exhibition match from the Staples Center in Los Angeles. After months of buildup as well as a delay from the original date by two months, Tyson and Jones Jr. will finally meet in the ring in what the California Athletic Commission has deemed “sparring” in hopes that neither fighter goes for the knockout.
But don’t tell Tyson or Jones that because the two have said multiple times in the buildup that this is going to be a legitimate fight.
Tyson, of course, was one of the most feared heavyweights in history, dominating the division over the late 1980s, becoming the youngest heavyweight champion in history with brutal punching power that carried him to a 37-0 record before he fell victim to one of the greatest sports upsets in history when he was knocked out by James “Buster” Douglas in Tokyo in February 1990. Tyson remained a star despite years spent in prison after being convicted of rape. Tyson would go on to infamous lows such as twice biting Evander Holyfield in their June 1997 rematch and quitting against Kevin McBride during his final pro bout. He has, in recent years, rehabilitated his image as a kinder, gentler version of himself, appearing in films, hosting a podcast and becoming an outspoken advocate for marijuana.
Can’t get enough boxing and MMA? Get the latest in the world of combat sports from two of the best in the business. Subscribe to Morning Kombat with Luke Thomas and Brian Campbell for the best analysis and in-depth news, including a preview of Tyson vs. Jones below.
Jones was named the best boxer of the 1990s by Ring Magazine. At his best, Jones displayed a dazzling combination of speed, power and defense, while being able to showboat in fantastic and improbable ways. Jones won wold championships at middleweight, super middleweight, light heavyweight, and eventually heavyweight in a historic accomplishment. After a near-flawless first 50 fights of his career — his lone loss a controversial disqualification against Montell Griffin that was avenged in less than one round in the rematch — Jones career slowly began to unravel as his style was too dependent on reflexes that diminished over time.
This card will also feature some more celebrity attractions as YouTube influencer Jake Paul takes on former NBA player Nate Robinson in a cruiserweight fight. The two have beefed over social media the past few months, leading to this interesting showdown. Paul, who made his professional debut in January with a first-round TKO, will have the height advantage at 6-foot-1, but Robinson should not be counted out. The former three-time NBA Slam Dunk champion has plenty of power in his slightly smaller frame.
Below is all the information we know about the bout, including the fight card, odds and rules. Be sure to check in on this page often as it will be updated frequently.