UFC president Dana White says that he is pleading with former undisputed heavyweight champion Mike Tyson, advising the Hall of Famer not to step back into the ring after Tyson released another viral training video and declaring “I’m back”.
Tyson has been teasing boxing fans with a possible return to the ring for the past few weeks with videos of himself hitting the pads to show off his speed and power.
White, a close friend of Tyson’s, does not want to see that comeback eventuate.
Tyson, 53-years-old, has been out of the ring since 2005, when he suffered a stoppage loss at the hands of Kevin McBride.
“I love Mike Tyson,” White said on Tim and Sid. “I’m begging him not to go fight. I said ‘you look awesome, you’re still explosive, you’re obviously still powerful, you’re one of the all-time greats.
"Mike, you’re 53, please don’t do it, please."
White even he hinted he would step in with an offer of his own to stop the former heavyweight from making a comeback if he needed to.
“Bottom line is I don’t want Mike to fight. If it comes down to where he is about to do something crazy, I might have to jump in and figure out something for him not to do it.”
White is not sure just what it is Tyson has planned, but he's been discussing the scenario of taking part in several exhibition bouts - against real boxers - to raise money for charity. But there are many who fear the exhibitions will lead to a full comeback.
“He absolutely wants to do something,” Tyson said. “I don’t know what he’s going to do but he absolutely wants to do something.”