Mike Tyson and the art of the athletic aftermath

I have a friend who thinks Mike Tyson is the biggest scumbag on earth. She says he’s a rotten wad of crap; that his rape conviction from long ago cannot be erased by a couple of lighthearted movie and TV appearances.

Perhaps she’s right. Perhaps she’s not.

All I know is that, when I see Mike Tyson nowadays, I’m always smiling. I find myself loving the guy. His willingness to cry during an interview. His self-loathing over a greedy, arrogant past. His ability to laugh at himself and his image. Seriously, I can’t think of a more riveting, more impressive transition from one public image to another.

The above video is the latest—and maybe best—example of Tyson learning from his past misdeeds, and evolving to something unique and, perhaps, special.

I love it.

5 thoughts on “Mike Tyson and the art of the athletic aftermath”

  1. I assumed, up until recently, that Tyson’s life would come to an early and ugly end — sort of like Michael Jackson’s. But he does seem to have turned himself around completely.

    I’ve always found Tyson to be a riveting personality. He is not well-educated, but he always came off to me as an extremely intelligent man. He was just, well, nuts.

    Sometimes people do change. It doesn’t forgive the bad things he did in the past. But people do change.

  2. We’ve seen so many dog-eared, “Tyson is a gentle spirit wrapped in a monster” pieces over the years they have become a cliché. I get it: he cares for pigeons and animals. He loves his children. Soon he’ll do something crazy. Hopefully he will survive. Five years from now, if he is still walking the earth, we’ll get another wave of nostalgic Tyson articles and TV features. What an incredible waste of talent. He should have been champion for 20 years.

    1. Ugh, I hate that “waste of talent” stuff. The guy was heavyweight champ—how is it a waste that he didn’t hold the title longer? Seriously, who cares? What a shame, he didn’t hold a belt for a greater number of days. Big whoops …

  3. If Josh Beckett’s career (2 WS rings, WS MVP, ALCS MVP, clinched final World Series title on Yankee Stadium field), is considered somewhat underwhelming, you could argue that Tyson (losing to Buster Douglas then spending the prime of his career in federal prison for rape) should be regarded as a letdown given his transcendent abilities.

  4. Funny Vid. Totally enjoyed it.
    I had seen him earlier and also thought he had turned his life around.
    Sort of a M. Vick type thing. It seems he has also turned his life around, but some people have no forgiveness in their heart. Though I suppose they would wish for forgiveness of themselves or their loved ones.

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