Evander Holyfield reveals the secret to beating Mike Tyson

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Friday, June 5,2020

Evander Holyfield believes his decision to be on the front foot against Mike Tyson was a key reason behind his two victories over his heavyweight rival. Holyfield first beat Tyson with an 11th round TKO in 1996 and won the rematch the following year after Iron Mike was disqualified in the third round for biting his opponent’s ear. Tyson was the heavy favourite in the build up to his first fight against Holyfield, who had lost twice to Riddick Bowe and once against Michael Moorer before the contest. But Holyfield’s aggressive approach stunned Tyson and the 57-year-old

‘I always liked to come forward, everyone thought I was gonna run from Mike, I wanted him to know I wasn’t going anywhere, that was the whole big thing,’ Holdfield told BBC Radio 5 Live. ‘I felt that I had quicker hands than Mike, I felt I had the reach. I got to hit him a couple of times, when you start hitting people they start changing.

Mike even said himself, ‘everyone’s got a plan until they get hit’. I’m one of those fighters that got hit a lot of times by some good shots, but I can take it. ‘The point of the matter was Mike didn’t get hit a lot because people were kinda timid with Mike. With me I wasn’t timid, I realised he was going to hit me but I had the right to hit him back. ‘The art of the game was to let him know that he chose the wrong person this time, because if he’s gonna get me he’s gonna have to out-work me.

The thing is I had already made up my mind that I would get the last punch so when he goes back to the corner I wanted him to think about how hard I hit him. I didn’t want to go back thinking about how hard he hit.

I knew that was part of the gameplan, you’ve got to push him, you’ve got to beat him to the punch.

Mike liked hitting people to the body but Mike didn’t like getting hit to the body. ‘I know that, things that people tend to do to their opponent they don’t like that for it to happen to them. ‘When I saw I hit Mike to the body, I knew it would slow.

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