Born Michael Gerard Tyson on June 30, 1966 in Brooklyn, NY. A standout amateur, Tyson was the 1984 National Golden Gloves champion. Following a controversial loss to Henry Tillman at the 1984 Olympic trials, he turned pro in 1985.
Behind his trademark peek-a-boo defense, quick hand speed and swarming combination punching, Tyson strung together 19 straight knockout victories before going the 10-round distance in back-to-back fights with James "Quick" Tillis and Mitch Green. Six more knockouts followed before stopping WBC king Trevor Berbick (TKO 2) in 1986 to become the youngest heavyweight champion in history. He added the WBA title with a decision over James Smith (W 12) and unified the titles with a win over IBF champion Tony Tucker (W 12), both in 1987. Six defenses of the unified titles came next, including wins over Larry Holmes, Tony Tubbs, Frank Bruno and Carl Williams. He stopped Michael Spinks in 91 seconds to earn universal recognition as champion in 1988. In 1990 he lost the title in an upset loss to James "Buster" Douglas. He rebounded for four wins, including two against Razor Ruddock. A proposed 1991 title bout with Evander Holyfield was postponed due to a rib injury. Tyson reclaimed the WBC and WBA titles in bouts with Frank Bruno (TKO 3) and Bruce Seldon (TKO 1) respectively in 1996. That same year, he lost the WBA strap to Holyfield (TKO by 11) and, in the 1997 rematch, Tyson lost by disqualification. From 1999 - 2001, six fights followed, including wins over Frans Botha (KO 5), Lou Savarese (TKO 1) and Brian Nielsen (TKO 7). In 2002 he was unsuccessful in a heavyweight title bid against champion Lennox Lewis (KO by 8).
"Iron" Mike retired from the ring in 2005 with a 50-6,2 NC (44 KOs) record.