Boxing: Mike Tyson and Floyd Mayweather's 20-year feud explained as war of words continue

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There remains no love lost between Mike Tyson and Floyd Mayweather Jr.

As two of the biggest names in the history of boxing, the feud between the American duo has been no secret over the past two decades.

Two of the most dominant men to step into the ring over the past 30 years, their’s is a tale of a former friendship of respect, turned decidedly sour.

Now, Tyson has stoked the flames of their feud once more with his comments in response to Mayweather’s opinion that there are now too many belts in the sport.

As he told Essentially Sports, disputing Mayweather’s claim: “Boxing never has too many belts because every time it’s a championship fight, it’s more money for the fighter. There’s never enough belts you know?

“To say there’s one champion and there’s 10 guys, how long will it take for the champion to fight the 10 guys?

“Plus they gotta go through each other… It’s good to have three champions because then everybody can get paid… Everybody makes money.

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“That’s what this business is about. Money.”

Indeed ‘money’ was the accusation made by Tyson in 2001.

Acting on what was claimed a tip-off, Tyson was arrested for alleged kidnapping and sexual assault on a female.

Sensationally, it was suggested in circles, as per The Sun, that it was Mayweather who had persuaded the victim to contact the police.

As former undisputed champion of the heavyweight division between 1987 and 1990, Tyson held the WBA, WBC and IBF belts during his reign.

In 2020, however, the division has been further split with the addition of both WBO and IBO crowns.

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Having enjoyed careers at opposite ends of the timeline, whilst Tyson’s career was on the wane, Mayweather’s, meanwhile, was merely beginning its journey of dominance.

A 15-time champion in five different weight divisions, Mayweather has held fewer belts than if he had fought at heavyweight.

Back in 2015, he further stirred the pot by suggesting he was the greatest boxer in history.

Having gone 50-0, it would be hard to dispute his claims at the very least, on paper.

In riposte, Tyson has bragged he would beat Mayweather in a street fight, due to his dirtier approach and also claimed his rival was ‘delusional’ for thinking he was boxing’s GOAT.

“He’s very delusional,” Tyson explained.

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“Listen, if he was anywhere near that realm of great as Muhammad Ali, he’d be able to take his kids to school by himself.

“Ok, he can’t take his kids to school by himself, and he’s talking about he’s great?

“Greatness is not guarding yourself from the people. It’s being accepted by the people.

“He can’t take his kids alone to school by himself. He’s a little scared man. He’s a very small, scared man.”

Tyson, meanwhile, made his comeback to the ring last weekend, winning over many critics following a 15-year absence.

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Sharing an official draw with Roy Jones Jr. at the Staples Center in their much-anticipated exhibition bout, the man formerly known as the ‘Baddest Man on the Planet’, had lost none of his punching power and ferocity, impressing also with his conditioning.

As two men both with 11 years between one another, could we yet see the pot come to the boil in the shape of a blockbuster showdown for the ages in the ring?

That remains to be seen, but for the moment at least, Tyson and Mayweather will not be exchanging holiday greetings any time soon.

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