After recently suffering a disturbing loss against Vitor Belfort in a Triller Fight Club event, boxing legend Evander Holyfield has made it clear that he still has every intention to face long-time rival, Mike Tyson.
Holyfield’s comments have been met with concern as the once-upon-a-time boxing giant’s latest performance was so poor due to his age it has brought fans across the world to criticize Triller Fight Club and the Florida Athletic Commission, the latter of which sanctioned the fight.
Throughout his bout against Belfort, Holyfield’s reflexes were less than a shadow of what they once were when he was in his prime. Most notably, the old champ can be seen falling through the ropes of the square ring when he tried to throw a punch at his much younger, nimbler opponent.
As the fight continued, Holyfield was unable to answer any of Belfort’s punches, leaving the referee no choice but to call off the fight. This resulted in a TKO victory for Belfort. Holyfield did not agree with the decision to stop the fight.
Although he was caught by an overhand right and knocked down by an uppercut, Holyfield maintains that he was not hurt. He also does not appear to be taking heed to the warnings and concerns of the public.
“I wasn’t able to bounce back like I used to. I let him get too close. But he’s strong and he pushed me but I wasn’t hurt. I’m not hurt at all,” Holyfield told the PRESS following the exhibition, according to ringtv.com.
“Yes, I’m still interested in fighting Mike Tyson,” he added.
The Holyfield-Belfort “showdown” continues to be met with scrutiny by fans and experts alike.
International Boxing Hall of Fame inductee, Dr Margaret Goodman recently tweeted, “The ring physicians who consented to work #HolyfieldBelfort should be asked to explain why they consented to work this event.”
Goodman once oversaw neurological exams for boxers in Nevada.
“Just because a bout is declared an “exhibition” doesn’t mean the fighters aren’t absorbing punishment, especially during training where most of the damage occurs. Regulators need to prove safety is their priority,” she added.