Quotes by Kevin Rooney



Quotes by Kevin Rooney:

“I had Mike sparring 10 rounds everyday… 5 days a week! It was an all out war EVERYDAY. There was none of that one day on and one day off crap. To be a great fighter… you have to spar. You gotta spar everyday, day in and day out, week after week. With Mike, I would spar him up until two or three days before a fight.” [TT, 44]

“One time in Atlantic City, Mike had gotten a bloody nose and Jimmy (Jacobs) wanted me to stop the sparring. I told Jimmy ‘What the fuck? If he gets a bloody nose in the fight, you want me to stop the fight then too?!’ Then, Jimmy understood exactly what I meant. Another time in Vegas, Mike got a little cut over his eye a few days before a fight. But, the cut didn’t re-open because he would move his head.” [TT, 44]

About the best punch Mike threw:
“The Spinks punch was pretty good. Mike hit him on the chin and put him in La-La Land. Although, that was expected because Spinks was a little nervous. But, Spinks grabbed his 13 million and got the hell out of there and retired. But, the Trevor Berbick punch… THAT was the best! He knocked Trevor down three times with one punch! That was a hell of a punch. That was the best one!” [TT, 44]

I’ve seen him take a shot, ‘Said Mikes ex trainer, Kevin Rooney. ‘When he was 15, he sparred with Carl [The Truth] Williams in the gym and go nailed right on the button. He walked right though it, like it was nothing.’

Quotes by Other People:

Jose Torres on seeing the Mike still as a kid working in the gym:
“When I saw Mike hit the heavy bag, move to one side, punch again, and move to the other side, I realized how extraordinarily difficult it would be to withstand this kid’s sledgehammer punches. I shook my head in disbelief.” [Fire, 53]

Eddie Richardson, after being knocked out by Tyson, was asked if he’s ever been hit as hard as Mike hit him:
“Yeah, about a year ago. I was hit by a truck.” [Heller, 126]

And there is Sterling Benjamin, the Jamaican who sagged under a furious body attack after 58  seconds of Round 1: ‘He has a sledgehammer, man!’

Sammy Scaff, the 250-pound Kentuckian who buckled under a barrage of Tyson punches, finally succumbing to a left hook after 1:19 of the first:
‘I sparred with Greg Page, and I went four rounds, with Tim Witherspoon,’ said Scaff, whose nose was still bleeding half an hour after the fight, ‘but I’ve never been hit that hard in my life.’

William Hosea after being knocked out in the first round by Tyson: ‘He fights you like you stole something from him’

Buster Mathis Jr. after his bout with Mike Tyson.:
‘Mike Tyson dropped me. and when I looked up, the count was on five. I said to myself, Damn, whatever happened to one to four.’

Frank Bruno:
“I’d rather fight Lennox once every week than fight Tyson once every year.”

Michael Spinks:
“Boxing is the best job in the world to let off steam, and people are in trouble when Tyson wants to let off steam” [Heller, 327]

Someone asked one of Mike’s sparring partners if he’s ever really tried to open up on Mike and get the best of him in the ring:
“I’m no fool. I’m paid to survive, not to commit suicide.” [Heller, 126]

Sparring partner Corey “T-Rex” Sanders:
“I’ve never been in the ring with someone who hit that hard. It feels like he has bricks in both hands.” [TT, 585]

Angelo Dundee after the Tyson-Berbick fight:
“He throws combinations I never saw before. I was stunned. Nothing is supposed to bother me. I’ve worked with Ali and Sugar Ray Leonard, but I’m seeing [from Tyson] a three-punch combination second to none. When have you seen a guy throw a right hand to the kidney, come up the middle with an uppercut, then throw a left hook?” [Heller, 155]

Freddie Roach about Tyson:
“Early in his career, he was unbeatable. He feared no one and was always in great shape. Great speed and a great puncher.”

Manny Steward about Tyson:
“What was so amazing about him was he was such a small guy in an era of tall fighters… just like Marciano was. Mike was 220 but he was fighting guys 240-250.”

Miguel Diaz:
“Tyson was so great until D’Amato and (Jimmy) Jacobs passed away. He was a great, great champ. The speed on his punches… not the speed of how the threw them, I’m talking about the ‘speed’ in which the brain tells the muscle to ‘throw’ – was unbelievable.”

Jersey Joe Walcott about Tyson:
“I think he is a great fighter and a great champion. He would have done well in any given time. I’m sure he would’ve done well in my time when all the great fighters of the 40s were around.” [Heller, 345]

Trainer Ray Arcel about Tyson:
“He could have fit in at any time in the heavyweight ranks. He could punchhard enough to have beaten anybody if he could hit them. The guy’s a natural fighter.” [Heller, 345]

Eddie Futch about Tyson:
“I think he has the potential to be the greatest of all, because he has two things going for him: terrific hand speed and the power, combined. He can lose 11 2/3 rounds of a fight and then take you out with one shot” [Heller, 345]

Jose Torres , NY Boxing commisioner:
‘Mike Tyson is so fast and so powerful that it is almost impossible to resist the guy’s punching power. Wherever he hits you, you’re going to feel it. He reminds me maybe of George Foreman, but Tyson’s much faster than Foreman. He reminds me in style of Rocky Marciano, but he’s much faster than Marciano, and he’s much bigger, 217 pounds. And he’s faster and much more powerful than Joe Frazier, with a better hook. I really have no one to compare him with in terms of punching power.’

Stacey Mckinly about Tyson:
‘He sees a guy beggin’ in the street and he gives him a hundred dollars. I’ll say, ‘Man, y’know the guy’s just gonna spend it on crack!’ But he says, ‘I leave it to Allah to judge him.’

Commentator after live watching Mike Tyson fight Mike Jameson: ‘He throws flurries and punches like a welterweight. Very seldom do you see heavyweights throw combinations of 5, 6 punches. But Mike Tyson does it’.