In what turned out to be a sporting event as bizarre as the year it ended, boxing legends Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr. returned to the ring in a battle of 50-year-old former champions on Saturday night.
After eight rounds of two minutes at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, and some impressive displays from both veteran fighters, the fight was deemed a draw by unofficial WBC judges Christy Martin, Vinny Pazienza and Chad Dawson.
“This is better than fighting for championships,” said Tyson after the fall of the heavyweights, whose goal was to raise money for charity. “We are humanitarian now. We can do something good for the world. We need to do this again. “
Although Jones’s return to the ring was his first since 2018, it was Tyson’s first time in 15 years. But the man who established himself as one of the game’s most dominant heavyweights in his prime showed glimpses of the way that made him an undisputed champion decades ago.
“The body shots definitely took their toll,” Jones said after the fight over Tyson’s attack. “It’s something to take the punches that Mike throws. I’m fine with a draw. Maybe we can do it again. “
While the event divided boxing fans between those who saw it as little more than a show and others who were more than willing to afford to have the chance to see two of the sport’s best returning, talk about the card on social media – YouTuber Jake Paul’s knockout victory about former NBA playmaker Nate Robinson for the Tyson and Jones main event meeting – made clear the undeniable interest in the event anyway.
The show certainly didn’t disappoint, either, with California legend Snoop Dogg emerging as one of the night’s real winners, his comments – there was no shortage of witty comments – attracting rave reviews from the social media crowd.
At the end of the night, the meeting of the two former champions under the lights ended amicably.
“I hit you with some good shots and you did it,” Tyson told Jones after the fight. “I respect this.”
Relive all the action below through Twitterverse’s reaction to the fight, from the opening bell to the last:
– ESPN Ringside (@ESPNRingside) November 29, 2020
First half (rounds 1-4)
Imagine if they were at their peak. Thanks Mike and Roy, we needed this. 1 for culture. And I am not complaining.
– Baron Davis (@BaronDavis) November 29, 2020
Snoop “does he really want to frustrate Mike?”
– Trae Young (@TheTraeYoung) November 29, 2020
Second half (rounds 4-8)
I think Roy Jones really thought this was an exhibition and Tyson’s fight for his life #tysonvsjones
– Billy Q (@BillyQMMA) November 29, 2020
– With Associated Press files