Words with Power from Mike Tyson

In the third instalment of Famous Fight Quotes, we look at one one of the most controversial, yet most respected fighters in the history of boxing.  Iron Mike Tyson was known for saying some pretty off the wall stuff, but rather than concentrate on the weirdness, let’s look at the man through the window of what he said.

Mike Tyson was famously Cus D’Amato’s final champion.  A disturbed youth on the path to a lifetime behind bars, Tyson was was taken in by D’Amato and given a sense of purpose.  He learned discipline, humility and respect. 

After D’Amato passed away, Tyson came under the influence of Don King, who encouraged him to play to his baser instincts and to be more outspoken with his sense of ego.  It is from that time that most of the more colorful Tyson quotes come.  Soundbites like:

“My power is discombobulating devastating. I could feel his muscle tissues collapse under my force. It’s ludicrous these mortals even attempt to enter my realm.”

“I just have this thing inside me that wants to eat and conquer. Maybe it’s egotistical, but I have it in me. I don’t want to be a tycoon. I just want to conquer people and their souls.”

But putting aside the madness, there is a profound, natural wisdom to Tyson’s words. 

Here are some of the most famous:

“Everyone has a plan ’till they get punched in the mouth.”

“You can’t be disturbed by anything. There’s no emotion involved. You can’t feel sorrow, you can’t feel pity, there’s nothing you feel. The job has to be done.”

“I’m a dreamer. I have to dream and reach for the stars, and if I miss a star then I grab a handful of clouds.”

The quote that sums up the Tyson that learned from the great Cus D’Amato is this:

“Everybody thinks this is a tough man’s sport. This is not a tough man’s sport. This is a thinking man’s sport. A tough man is gonna get hurt real bad in this sport.”

Tom Billinge Tom is the Editor of Revgear Sports. He has been training in Muay Thai gyms in Thailand and around the world for 20 years and is a fully-qualified instructor. Tom is a Jiu Jitsu blue belt in the Kore gi and 10th Planet no gi systems. He has trained Lethwei in Myanmar, Kushti wrestling in India, boxing throughout Europe, and catch wrestling in the USA. Tom has spent several years reconstructing the techniques of traditional British bareknuckle pugilism from archaic manuals.