As one of boxing’s most revered talents, Mike Tyson once boasted a profile that made him one of the most sought-after celebrities on the planet.
But with that fame, fortune and fandom comes a lot of unwanted attention, which sometimes forced ‘Iron Mike’ to retaliate in a manner that had major financial consequences.
The former undisputed world heavyweight champion once revealed on his Hotboxin' with Mike Tyson podcast that one particular lashing out led to a settlement worth $8million (£5.8m).
Actor and guest Terry Crews referred to his own ‘hairpin trigger’ against overzealous admirers before Tyson interrupted: "I was that guy, trippin’, hitting people because they’re f*****g with me too much for autographs.
"I f*****g knocked them out or would break their f***ing jaw.
“Next thing I know, I started signing those cheques and that’s what broke my spirit.
"These guys were getting $4m (£3.1m), $8m (£6.2m), I don’t even know these guys – who are these guys?
“Just because I was stupid. You know I’d hit these guys, man.”
Payouts of that size may be enough to bankrupt most other athletes, but Tyson’s place atop the boxing pile meant those sums were only a fraction of the boxer’s wealth at his pinnacle.
It wasn’t only members of the public who got on Tyson’s bad side, either, after he got into a street brawl with fellow pro Mitch Green having already beaten him in the ring.
Tyson was still 19 when he beat Green over 10 rounds in 1986, but his former foe approached him in Harlem two years later when he dished out another defeat before fleeing in his Rolls-Royce.
Tyson lived a life of luxury and splurged his winnings on mansions and cars, while he was noted for keeping big cats such as tigers as pets.
His boxing career was put on hiatus, however, after Tyson was arrested in July 1991 for raping 18-year-old Desiree Washington, going on to serve a little more than three years in prison.
‘The Baddest Man on the Planet’ once infamously flew through his £320m empire before filing for bankruptcy in 2003, although he has since rebuilt his wealth largely through the cannabis industry.
At the peak of his powers, Tyson earned as much as £28.4m for his fights against Lennox Lewis and Bruce Seldom, raking in another £24.4m for each of his back-to-back losses against Evander Holyfield.
The 55-year-old even completed his boxing comeback last year when he ran to an exhibition draw against Roy Jones Jr. in November 2020.
Speculation is now building around whom Tyson could face in his next exhibition outing, with Logan Paulbacking himself to beat the heavyweight after he fought Floyd Mayweather in June.
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