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Lennox Lewis Reveals What Happened In Sparring With A Young Mike Tyson

Lennox Lewis Reveals What Happened In Sparring With A Young Mike Tyson

One of Tyson's old foes knew he was always destined for the top.

Daniel Marland

Daniel Marland

Lennox Lewis has discussed having to spar with a young Mike Tyson as the pair were far too strong for their own age groups.

Lewis and Tyson would eventually fight in 2002 in the twilight of their careers - but they already had history.

Speaking to Joe Rogan on the 'Joe Rogan Experience', former world champion Lewis said:

"I remember going to the Catskills. I won the World Junior Championships in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and I remember the American team were like, 'Oh you never fought the best.'


"I thought the Americans sent the best team? 'Yeah but one guy, he doesn't like taking planes and his manager don't like taking planes either.'

"They told me it was Mike Tyson and Cus D'Amato. So me and my trainer left Canada and we drove all the way up there [to Catskill.]

"While we were up there, [Donovan] Razor Ruddock was up there. They said, 'Razor Ruddock didn't spar with us'. So I said, 'Okay, I'll spar with you, I'm here for four days'."

Lewis explained that a young Tyson would show respect to Lewis and even gave the Brit a glimpse of his incredible boxing knowledge.

"The first time Tyson actually met me he was a really nice guy, he took me to his room and showed me some old flicks that I have never seen before of old time fighters.

"He would tell me about each fighter, he studied them. This was where he get his style of fighting from."

But Lewis admitted all that changed when he stepped into the ring with a 17-year-old 'Iron Mike'.

"First day in the gym and when the bell went he came across and he was trying to kill me.

"I tried the Muhammad Ali thing obviously and stayed away from his power but the first day was really hectic, the second day was hectic but actually on the last day I got the better of him.

Lewis and Tyson faced off in 2002 and it was the former who came out on top. (Image

"I remember Cus D'Amato saying, 'Mike! You're gonna meet him some day, don't you do that!'

"And that always echoed on my mind, 'Will we ever fight?'. Because Cus D'Amato said we were going to fight, and it did happen."

Lewis would eventually end up defeating Tyson via an eight-round knockout when they faced off at the Pyramid Arena in Memphis, Tennessee.

Tyson faces Roy Jones Jr in his return to action, for the first time in 15 years, on Saturday night.

Featured Image Credit: Joe Rogan Experience/YouTube & PA Images

Topics: Heavyweight boxing, American boxing, Mike Tyson, Boxing News, Roy Jones Jr, Boxing, Lennox Lewis, American sports