Mike Tyson is a changed man these days, as the former heavyweight boxing champion appears to be on a path of spiritual enlightenment, which includes making amends with those he felt he’s wronged, regardless of what transpired in the past.
Nobody fits that mold better than Don King, the infamous boxing promoter who teamed up with Tyson during his meteoric rise to become a boxing legend, only to be accused of stealing millions from his fighters, including Iron Mike.
Veteran sportscaster Jim Gray recently joined Tyson and co-host Eben Britton on their “Hotboxin’ With Mike Tyson” podcast. Gray has known Tyson since the boxer was 16 years old, and the two quickly began reminiscing about the good old days of prizefights and hobnobbing with A-list celebrities at Hollywood nightclubs.
Gray asked if Tyson kept up with anyone from the old crew, including his trainers and members of his entourage. He also asked about Tyson’s former boxing promoter, Don King.
“I called Don the other day just to say I apologize,” Tyson responded, referring to his bombastic former boxing promoter.
Tyson and King worked together for many years until they had a bitter falling out that ended in a civil suit filed by the boxing legend against King, alleging that he had stolen over $100 million during their time together.
Tyson continued explaining his recent phone call to King:
“Don’s a good man but Don just don’t get it, y’know. He probably thought I was trying to set him up on the phone or whatever, he was very protective, very skeptical.”
Tyson explained he was calling to apologize for throwing water on King during a Boxing Hall of Fame event in 2018. During a panel, the 88-year-old promoter came up behind Tyson and touched him on the shoulder, and the reception wasn’t warmly met. Tyson later told reporters he had acted “immaturely,” and that the move by his old cohort had sent him into a rage.
Tyson revealed that at the end of his phone conversation, King told him, “You’re really a good person, y’know,” to which the former heavyweight champ responded, “thanks.”
Jim Gray was moved by the story and asked Tyson what caused him to reach out to King in the first place.
Tyson, proving he’s in a different mindstate these days, explained that he recently saw the video on YouTube and that, “I had a very nasty feeling in my body from throwing that water in his face … I felt sickened by that.”
He added, “I shouldn’t be doing s–t like that, I been through too much bulls–t to throw water in people’s faces like I’m a tough guy. The tough guy stuff got me in trouble.”