Tyson vs Foreman

Mike Tyson vs George Foreman

Mike Tyson and George Foreman never fought each other. But of all the hypothetical scenarios, or “dream fights,” which boxing fans love to talk about and discuss, a bout between George Foreman and Mike Tyson is still among the most fascinating. Maybe it’s because the fight could actually have happened in the 1990’s, when the ex-champ Tyson was mounting a comeback after his loss against Buster Douglas while at the same time Foreman was mounting a comeback of his own.

George Foreman made his comeback on 9 March 1987, ten years after his retirement. He was 38 years old at the time.

George Foreman’s comeback reached its pinnacle on 5 November 1994 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, when Foreman, then aged 45, won the WBA and IBF world heavyweight championship by KO over Michael Moorer in the tenth round. Foreman had previously lost world championship bouts on points to Evander Holyfield and Tommy Morrison.

A dream fight between Tyson and Foreman never took place, although there were a few times when such a bout appeared imminent (Tyson and Foreman actually shared billing for a doubleheader on 16 June 1990 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas (Mike Tyson vs. Henry Tillman and George Foreman vs. Adilson Rodrigues) and a second was planned for 1990, while the big plan was for the two to face off at the end of the year).

Fans are very divided on the question of which legendary boxer would have won if Foreman and Tyson had actually faced off in 1990, 1991 or even 1994.

“Big George” is probably one of the toughest opponents for most fighters in the history of heavyweight boxing. Foreman was massive for his size, had an iron chin, good endurance and insane punching power, as demonstrated by his victory over Michael Moorer. Tyson, on the other hand, had problems with his conditioning, and while Tyson punched extremely hard, he was small for a heavyweight, which Foreman would have been able to use to his advantage. For these reasons, many fans have always believed that “Iron Mike” avoided a fight with Foreman.

But as George Foreman explained, neither of the two men really wanted to fight each other.

The former champion revealed in an interview that he was not enthusiastic about fighting Tyson, stating as follows:

“I didn’t want any part of Mike Tyson. He was a monster… Those are the kind of guys you see in a nightmare. And you want to wake up and say, ‘so glad that was a dream.’ I didn’t want any part of Mike Tyson, no way.” But Foreman said that Tyson was probably happy that he didn’t have to fight him and said, “he was scared and I was glad of that.”

Tyson vs Foreman
13″ x 11″
Colored pencil on paper

This artwork appears on the cover of the November 1990 edition of The Ring Magazine.