Mike Tyson’s brilliant reply when asked who wins a fight between him and prime Muhammad Ali

Mike Tyson's brilliant reply when asked who wins a fight between him and prime Muhammad Ali

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Mike Tyson gave a brilliant reply when asked who would win a heavyweight bought between him and Muhammad Ali.

There are a lot of questions to be answered in boxing’s heavyweight division going into 2024.

Is Anthony Joshua back to his best? Will Tyson Fury get the better of Oleksandr Usyk? Is Deontay Wilder finished? Of course, they are all queries likely to be settled by the end of next year.

However, we will never get an answer to boxing most curious and frequently asked hypothetical question: Who wins between a prime Tyson and a prime Ali?

Tyson reigned as the undisputed world heavyweight champion from 1987 to 1990, having won his first 19 professional fights by knockout, 12 of them in the first round.

He became the first heavyweight boxer to simultaneously hold the WBA, WBC and IBF titles, as well as the only heavyweight to unify them in succession.

After being knocked out by underdog Buster Douglas in 1990 and undergoing prison time in 1992, Tyson engaged in a series of comeback fights, regaining the WBA and WBC titles in 1996.

Meanwhile, Ali held the Ring magazine heavyweight title from 1964 to 1970, was the undisputed champion from 1974 to 1978 and the WBA and Ring heavyweight champion from 1978 to 1979.

Ali’s dominance in the ring and activism outside it saw him named in 1999 as Sportsman of the Century by Sports Illustrated and the Sports Personality of the Century by the BBC.

While it’s impossible to truly know who would have won a bout between Ali and Tyson, the latter believes that he wouldn’t have stood a chance.

Speaking to ‘This is 50’ in 2012, Iron Mike insisted that no one could have beaten prime Ali.

He said: “There’s no man like him. Everything we have, he supersedes it.

“Nobody beats Ali, it’s not about the muscle memory it’s not about concentration it’s just about him doing it.

“I can’t beat that man, hell no f**k this (laughs).”

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