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Last Updated:  Tuesday, 18 February, 2003, 11:27 GMT
Should Tyson face Lewis?
Should Mike Tyson retire from boxing?
Tyson's reputation has taken a battering
Mike Tyson demolishes Clifford Etienne in just 49 seconds but stalls over scheduling a rematch with Lennox Lewis.

Should Iron Mike take on Lennox next?

Tyson had initially pulled out of the Etienne contest, citing illness - but a late decision to go through with the bout saw him despatch his opponent in just 49 seconds.

But despite the emphatic victory, Tyson claims he needs another couple of fights to regain his sharpness before facing Lewis again.

His trainer, Freddie Roche, says Tyson is right to take his time - but the promoters are anxious to set a date, and are still hopeful of scheduling the bout for June.

Is Tyson running scared from the British champion? Or is he right to take his time?

This debate is now closed. See below for a selection of your e-mails.

Mike Tyson maybe an animal but that's what makes him a great boxer. If you remove the aggressive character of Tyson, then you just have a low-average boxer. If Tyson wants to face Lewis then let him.
George Nipah, England

The man is unstable and should be banned from boxing. The things he says in the build up to a bout are nothing short of madness. Get him out before he goes too far. He is not a boxer; he is an overly aggressive brawler.
Doug, UK

Mike should retire for his own sake. However, his place in boxing history is assured. The young Tyson would have dismantled Lewis and Holyfied within a couple of rounds. Why did Lewis not turn pro sooner?
Steve, Scotland

It seems to be down to Tyson, Lewis will do what he is told, as long as the money's right. Whenever it happens, Tyson will take a beating. The main reason is that Lewis no longer fears Tyson, just as Holyfield didn't.

I hope Mike Tyson does quit for his own sake and find something other than boxing to help him in life
Acki, England

Once he no longer intimidates opponents, Tyson is a beaten man. His supporters should stop looking through rose tinted specs and realise that if he does get back in the ring with Lewis he could get really badly hurt.
Terry, England

When Tyson's explosive but repetitive offensive capacity has been worn away, there does not seem to be much left - just a lonely person to be gradually beaten down by the superior skills of someone like Lennox Lewis.

Ideally Mike should continue with Etienne level fights. If he is unrealistic enough, or brave enough, to fight Lennox again he should make an all out effort to connect with one of his ferocious blows in the first or second rounds. Mike, get yourself some very tall sparring partners and if you are not getting through to them, do yourself a favour, don't fight Lennox again.
Alvin Vorderegger, New Zealand

I don't care what people think about Mike Tyson and his antics. He is still my favourite fighter and I know he can beat Lennox. One or two more fights and he will reclaim the heavyweight crown.
Mike, USA

I still believe Tyson is a great boxer. Although he was unable to match Lewis when they fought he still has the quality inside him to perform and win titles once again!

It is too late for Tyson to 'go gracefully'
Tom, UK
It's his mental strength that will win him titles more so than his ability. I bet boxers still fear getting into the ring with Iron Mike! Why shouldn't he carry on fighting? It's his career and his life, I say let him get on with it!
Ryan Wilson, Lincoln, England

Mike Tyson is an animal and should be locked in a cage like all dangerous animals should be. He's the most mixed-up bundle of aggression and pent-up energy which used to be the main reason why he was so successful as a heavyweight boxer.

Now he has become an over-hyped joke. He has lost his cutting edge, both physically and mentally and should retire after the match against Etienne.
Lukas Glynn, Germany

I really don't understand the people who call Tyson an animal and one who lowers boxing. Who are these people kidding? Boxing is a brutal, barbaric and primitive sport full of desperate people trying to better themselves. So exactly what kind of person do you expect in this sport?

His combat skills were at the highest level and he is a boxing legend, truly one of the greats. But the biggest and hardest question for any boxer is when to quit. I hope Mike Tyson does quit for his own sake and find something other than boxing to help him in life.
Acki, England

Tyson could have been the greatest heavyweight of all time and until the Douglas fight, was well on course. But his fragile mental state ensures that he is never far away from self-destruction.

In any other profession, with his track record he would have been made to retire years ago. Tyson is obviously no longer seen as a serious challenger to Lewis, but as a travelling freak show used to draw the audience in a stagnant heavyweight division.

I for one wish he would retire, so I can carry the untarnished memory of the sight of a frustrated Trevor Burbick, staggering wildly across the canvas after being floored by an uppercut from a 20year old, awesome, Mike Tyson.

He needs to retire from the ring. The punching power might still be there, but the quick movement and the nous to use his skills effectively have clearly gone.
Dave Rainford, England

It is too late for Tyson to "go gracefully". He has nothing left from years of battering and being battered. I wonder that people who call themselves civilised can look forward to seeing this pathetic figure being smashed again by someone younger and fitter. Boxing is a disgusting brutalising activity - look at the picture of Tyson if you don't believe me. It's time to draw an end to this shameful "sport".
Tom, UK

No, like all animals, at the end of the working life, he too should be put down!
Piers Lawson-Brown, Germany

Should he retire? He shouldn't have been allowed back
Gareth, Wales now US
lthough it is clear Tyson is past his best I still rate him as a spectacle. I hope that he will fight David Tua before he retires. The two share a similar style (and stature) and the bout would make for great entertainment.
Cleo Andreas, New Zealand

I was shocked to see, in a recent photo, how OLD Tyson looks. Considering also the beatings he has taken, his history of mental illness and criminal offences, I have to ask what it says about us if we still want to see him fight. I just hope he does not end up dead in the ring.
Jonathan Mason, USA

I love reading all these comments about how Tyson is the greatest ever and can beat anyone including Lewis. I remember the same comments being said last summer before the Tyson V Lewis fight and here we are again, same comments but this time after being destroyed by a far superior fighter.

I agree that Tyson was good in his day, the best, but when you look at some of the opposition he had. Frank Bruno was a joke, hit him on the chin with a rolled up newspaper and he would go down for the count.

But getting back to the question, Tyson should never have been allowed back into the ring after the ear-biting incident. That just proved that he had finally lost the plot. Sure we would have missed the great sight of Tyson lying flat on his back, with blood coming out of a cut above his eye, thinking 'what was that?' That was LEWIS BABY.

Should he retire? He shouldn't have been allowed back.
Gareth, Wales now US

I do not think Iron Mike Tyson should retire because he is the best boxer in the world. And if he does retire, there will be no-one to give Lennox Lewis a good fight.
Tahir Ishaq, England

His new tattoo marks him out as a natural for the WWE
Joe Lyons, England

Man. He was the most exciting to watch. But ever since he lost to Holyfield, things just haven't been the same. He showed SOME aggression versus LENNOX in the first 2 rounds, but that was it! I hope he retires while he's still got SOME fans left.
Has, Canada



Tyson fight called off
18 Feb 03 |  Boxing

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