Published: July 31, 2004
Mike Tyson tore a ligament in his left
knee in the first round of his shocking knockout loss to Danny
Williams, his manager said Saturday.
Tyson arrived at the airport today in Louisville in a wheelchair with a cast on his leg. He is expected to have surgery on the knee when he arrives back in Phoenix.
Shelly Finkel said an MRI showed a complex tear of the lateral
meniscus, and that Tyson couldn’t even walk on the leg Saturday. He
said Tyson’s ex-wife Monica, who is a doctor, read the results.
“That’s why he couldn’t throw the right hand the rest of the fight,”
Finkel said. “I was screaming at him to throw it, but he couldn’t.”
Tyson was dominating the first round, rocking Williams with shots to
the head, but late in the round motioned toward his knee and grimaced.
Finkel said Tyson refused to make an excuse and wanted to continue
Williams ended up knocking Tyson out with a series of punches in the
fourth round that left Tyson sprawled on the canvas.
“In retrospect I wish he had said something and said he couldn’t continue,” Finkel said.
After the fight, Tyson’s trainer, Freddie Roach credited Williams with
fighting a good fight, but said Tyson was hampered by the injury.
“It’s kind of hard to pivot and throw some shots without your left
knee,” Roach said. “But Danny Williams surprised a lot of us.”
After his previous defeats Tyson always has been graceful, crediting his opponents fully, and never came with an (illegimate) excuse then. It’s highly unlikely that now an illegimate excuse has been made up and the injury-effect case certainly has credibility.
Finkel said Tyson was downcast after the fight, and that it would take
some time to decide when – or whether – to resume his career.
“We’ll have to see how emotionally he’s hurt from this as opposed to
physically,” Finkel said. “We need some time to tell.”
Promoter Bob Arum, who had planned to offer Tyson a four-fight deal
worth some $100 million if he looked good, said that deal was now off
For Tyson to continue, Arum said, he would have to fight for a few
hundred thousand dollars a fight to build his record back up before
becoming a contender again.
“Certainly it’s a different Mike Tyson than there was in our
estimation last night,” Arum said. “If he’s going to continue in the
ring it’s got to be done on a completely different basis. He’s got to
fight C and D fighters and build his confidence. You can’t put him in
with legitimate heavyweights.”