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Mike Tyson Once Offered Zookeeper $10,000 To Fight Gorilla

Mike Tyson’s turbulent times as a boxer knew no bounds.

The youngest heavyweight champion in boxing history not only wanted to pulverize any person in his path, but the same notion went to any species as well.

Tyson — the self-anointed original Tiger King — recently shared his regret and “foolish” days in owning tigers for over 15 years in which he would even let the big cats into his bed so that they’d sleep with him.

Before Tyson started owning Tigers in 1995, the pugilist who was fascinated by pigeons his entire life had a much more meaner streak.

“I paid a worker at New York's zoo to re-open it just for me and [ex wife] Robin [Givens],” Tyson once told The Sun about a story that presumably took place before 1988. "When we got to the gorilla cage there was one big silverback gorilla there just bullying all the other gorillas. They were so powerful but their eyes were like an innocent infant. I offered the attendant $10,000 to open the cage and let smash that silverback's snot box! He declined.”


Professing unwarranted desire to hit an animal is a shocking admission even by Tyson’s standards, who’s long been known to be an animal lover.

These days, a more calm and relaxed Tyson often posts pictures of his dog Mars, a doodle, playfully sparring with the canine in the kitchen.

Manouk Akopyan is a sports journalist and member of the Boxing Writers Assn. of America since 2011. He has written for the likes of the LA Times, Guardian, USA Today, Philadelphia Inquirer, Men’s Health and and currently does TV commentary for combat sports programming that airs on Fox Sports and hosts his own radio show in Los Angeles. He can be reached on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan or via email at manouk[dot]akopyan[at]

User Comments and Feedback
Comment by IceTrayDaGang on 04-14-2020

tyson woulda got tore up.. he knew he didnt want it.. if he really did, could have made it happen in a 3rd world country. they'll take that money and tyson's meat for the village.

Comment by Bda31175 on 04-14-2020

Kudos to the Bronx zookeeper for his surprising adherence to professional ethics. If Mike had offered two hundred bucks to wrestle an alligator in Florida, "hell buddy! I was wonderin' when you were gonna ask! Get in there and git…

Comment by Boxing_1013 on 04-09-2020

[QUOTE=PittyPat;20499825]Well now... It's not a big animal in the predator sense, but here's what happens when a full-height highly-charged kangaroo takes a right hand square on the nose from a grown man who no doubt is running on adrenaline:

Comment by JAB5239 on 04-07-2020

[QUOTE=jreckoning;20498899]As requested, I bumped the original thread on this. A lot of educated, erudite answers on there by the all-knowing, never wrong boxing scene chorus of members. :lol1:[/QUOTE] :rofl::rofl::rofl:

Comment by archiemoore1 on 04-07-2020

The problem with fighting a gorilla is pretty simple. They weigh 450 lbs but can swing their bodies through trees with ease. They can rip thick bamboo apart and break banana trees in half to get the fruit. so imagine…

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