At his peak, Mike Tyson was one of the scariest and baddest men on the planet. But, just like everyone else, age eventually caught up with him, and he retired when he was 38 years old. That said, now in his 50s, Mike Tyson may be planning a comeback. However, he should learn a thing or two from his former opponent, Donovan Ruddock.
Who is Donovan Ruddock?
A ’90s era boxer, Ruddock is largely unremarkable if you only look at his record. He had a decent record of 40-6, but most of his wins were against nobodies.
When he fought the best, he usually lost. For example, he lost to Tyson twice in 1991, he lost to Lennox Lewis a year later, and he lost to Tommy Morrison a few years after that. However, heavyweight boxing fans may remember him for being one of the hardest punchers of his generation.
As talkSPORT said, he was known for a unique punch that was called the “Smash.” It was a combination of a hook and an uppercut, and, when it landed, it did a lot of damage.
It’s partially why he got his nickname of “Razor,” since he’d give people cuts with his heavy hands. Additionally, Tyson himself said that Ruddock’s punches were more painful than many of his other opponents. According to talkSport, ‘Iron Mike’ said that Ruddock’s punches felt “like a f****** mule kick.”
Unlike Tyson though, Ruddock retired in 2001 after winning a Canadian belt. However, a decade later, he felt like he was ready to give boxing another shot.
Donovan Ruddock returns to heavyweight boxing
Heavyweight boxing is probably the best weight class for old men to fight in since heavyweights don’t need to cut weight and, if they get lucky, they can land a knockout shot on their younger opponent.
That said, it’ll still be tough to get back into boxing against younger and faster guys. George Foreman may have won the heavyweight title at 45 years old, but he also lost it a few years later.
This was pretty much what happened to Ruddock. As Boxing 247 wrote, in 2015, he returned to the ring at the age of 51. He wanted to see how he’d do against real boxers who were half his age.
He not only trained for this comeback, but he also changed his life and was vegan at the time. At first, he did ok, as he beat two unknown Canadian heavyweights.
Then, when he fought Dillon Carman, who was the Canadian heavyweight champion, he was soundly beaten and brutally knocked out in the third round. Carman was decades younger than Ruddock, and after this win, his career has largely remained unremarkable.
What Mike Tyson could learn from Donovan Ruddock
If ‘Iron Mike’ is serious about making a comeback, then he should probably avoid fighting a real boxer. This seems to be the current plan, as non-boxers, such as Tito Ortiz and Wanderlei Silva, are reportedly on the shortlist of possible opponents. Additionally, he should avoid fighting someone who’s decades younger than him.
Age has a lot of serious effects on one’s athletic abilities, and the difference between a 40-year-old and a 30-year-old, in terms of athleticism, is massive. Thankfully, both Ortiz and Silva are also relatively old themselves, as they are 45 and 43 respectively.
If Tyson wants to fight a real boxer, then again, he should fight someone his age. That’s why a trilogy fight between him and the 57-year-old Evander Holyfield is possible, too.
Or alternatively, Tyson may realize that he doesn’t need to get punched in the head for money anymore. He may have that competitive spirit again, but boxing is a dangerous sport, and he can make millions doing something else.