Tyson sparring partner Cameron speaks out


Published: June 2, 2005

Source: stuff.co.nz

By Jim Mahoney

Thanks to drh

He’s survived several four-round sparring sessions with Mike Tyson,
the legendary brawling former heavyweight king.

Cameron has been in Phoenix, Arizona in the US, helping Tyson prepare
for his comeback fight against Kevin McBride.

Once “The Baddest Man on the Planet”, Tyson still has a reputation
for bowling over sparring partners.

And he has brutally fast hands.

So it was no surprise that Cameron came out of his first round with
“Iron Mike” a bit shell-shocked.

“The bombs were coming from everywhere,” he told me.

“We were both landing hooks and uppercuts, overhand rights.

“We weren’t going anywhere. It might as well have been inside a phonebooth.

“He was a lot sharper the next day. I had to pull out all the tricks
just to get some shots on him. He comes out firing hundreds of punches
and they’re all power shots.

“I was the only guy who sparred him the first day and the second. They
had the other guys wrapped up and ready but Tyson said he didn’t want
them. He’d had his blowout.

“After coming back from the first round I felt like I’d done four.”

More quotes available in the extended section of this post (click ‘Read More‘ below).

Cameron said it wasn’t so much Tyson’s renowned knockout power but
his hand speed that had impressed him.

“The thing I noticed was he was real fast with the combos inside so
I had to speed up on the inside, too.

“Jeff Fenech (Tyson’s trainer) said I’d brought more out in him (Tyson)
than the other sparring partners. I took that as a real compliment,”
Cameron said.

“He was pacing back and forth and staring at Shane,” said Cameron’s
trainer Danny Codling.

“It’s very intimidating.

“I was thinking ‘Jesus he does it sparring too’. When the bell went
– you know Shane’s style, he doesn’t take a step back in sparring.
They were just trading blows from the beginning to the end.”

And Fenech gave Cameron big raps, too.

“He’s done great – he really helped Mike a lot,” said the former three-time
world champion.

“I think Shane is going to really benefit from what happened. The confidence
he’ll get from here will be huge.”

But he also sounded a note of caution.

“He’s still got to learn – to move his head and feet a bit.

“He’ll learn from every fight. He’s the kind of guy you say something
to him and he listens.

“He’s really strong. But he’s got learn to roll with the punches and
not come up straight away – to stay in there and see if there’s anything
for him.

“Shane’s tough but it takes more than that.

“Some of these big heavyweights, they only have to hit you once in
the temple or the jaw and that’s it.