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Millarvie rejects Tyson offer
I'D RATHER KO TYSON THAN SPAR WITH HIM
Apr 29 2005
Rookie Scot Ian rejects Iron Mike offer
By Hugh Keevins
HAMILTON hitman Ian Millarvie last night turned down a dream chance to spar with Mike Tyson.
Iron Mike fights Irishman Kevin McBride in Washington DC on June 11 but has developed a problem with finding boxers to match McBride's height and weight for training purposes.
International matchmaker and agent Don Majeski, who is based in New York, paid Millarvie and his manager Tommy Gilmour a late-night visit to invite the Scot to Pheonix, Arizona for a work-out with the former world champion.
Gilmour would have gladly taken Millarvie to Arizona but that would have meant sacrificing his training programme for his protege and he was unwilling to do that to Tyson's former trainer, Stan Hoffman.
Gilmour said: 'It's too early for Ian to be mixing with somebody like Tyson. He's got three weeks' work to do with Stan in the Catskill Mountains and then we'll know what we've got on our hands.'
Millarvie said: I'd have taken the fight with Tyson for $100,000 and never mind McBride, but Tommy knows bestGilmour has also brought in Majeski, New York's biggest starmaker, to work with Millarvie on the next phase of putting the kid from nowhere on the boxing map.
The Scots boxer reports today to his training camp isolated in the Catskill Mountains and spent yesterday on his one and only sightseeing trip in the Big Apple.
It might have been so misty his head was literally stuck in the clouds at the Empire State Building on Fifth Avenue - where visibility was nil in the morning gloom.
But tonight Millarvie will need to cook his own food and live a life of self-sufficiency as he buckles down to the training regime to gear him up for his fight in Motherwell's Civic Centre on May 27.
An Eastern European is to be brought in for the occasion and the fight will be marketed by using the slogan 'the Beast from the East meets the Best from the West'.
But Majeski has been brought on board in the meantime as part of Gilmour's strategy to mobilise his contacts in the event that Millarvie turns out to be as promising as he is unique.
Gilmour said: 'I've done - just about everything in my time as a manager and promoter but I've never had a successful heavyweight.
'Twenty years ago there was a boxer called Dougie Young from the Borders but he was four stone lighter and five inches smaller than big Ian.
'I have given him a canvas by bringing him to New York and getting the best people I know to work with him. Now it's up to him to prove he can paint on that canvas.
'He had never even been to America before we arrived here with Record Sport on Tuesday night. Now he's driving along Broadway on a stretch limo to see the Statue of Liberty.
'But I've told him I want that to be the norm and not the exception. Does he want to hang on to his Ford Escort or does he want to travel first class everywhere he goes?'
Majeski's forte is matching the best with the best and he is internationally acclaimed.
He can make doors open for the unknown from Scotland and Gilmour brought them together last night before Millarvie's three-hour journey into the mountains takes him away from the metropolis for the remainder of his stay in the United States. But the plan to match Millarvie with the so-called 'baddest man on the planet' was too ambitious for a fighter with only two professional contests under his belt.
The object of the exercise now is to find out if Millarvie could come back to America at some later stage as an opponent for the former champion - and not one of the boxers he roughs up for practice.
A Scottish hevayweight? what's the world coming to