Bruce Seldon vs. Mike Tyson

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Tyson puts Seldon down for the second and final time.

1996-09-07 : Mike Tyson 219 lbs beat Bruce Seldon 229 lbs by TKO at 1:49 in round 1 of 12

Notes

  • The fight was originally scheduled for July 13, but it was postponed because Tyson was suffering from bronchitis.
  • Tyson's purse was $15 million, and Seldon's was $5 million.
  • Seldon was a 22-1 underdog.
  • The fight was televised live on pay-per-view by Showtime. It generated one million buys.
  • Paid attendance at the MGM Grand was 9,511. The gate was $6,305,900.
  • The Philadelphia Inquirer reported the following on September 8, 1996:
The Atlantic City Express was derailed almost as soon as it left the station. Bruce Seldon, who is nicknamed for a train, caught two punches of dubious power from Mike Tyson last night and, almost without any resistance, timidly surrendered his World Boxing Association championship in a bout that had a less-than-sellout crowd in the MGM Grand Garden booing its displeasure and chanting: "Fix . . . fix . . . " Seldon joined a lengthy list of Tyson victims who have never made it out of the first round and were paralyzed by fear even as they climbed into the ring. Seldon went down twice, and both times appeared to do so more from fright than from being hit with Tyson's customary concussive force. Replays of the first knockdown showed a right hand passing over Seldon's head, barely grazing it, but Seldon flopped convincingly to the canvas. He arose as referee Richard Steele reached the count of six. Tyson, at Steele's signal, came out of the neutral corner and walked in. Seldon never left the corner until Tyson was on top of him. Tyson threw a left hand that Seldon was moving away from. This punch at least was more than a glancing blow, but most of its power seemed to have evaporated by the time it landed. Certainly it wasn't a vintage Tyson bomb. Nonetheless, Seldon fell heavily again, pawing at Tyson with one hand as he was going. When Seldon got up, his legs shimmied. Steele apparently believed Seldon and dutifully called it off. Exactly 1 minute, 49 seconds had elapsed. It was Tyson's 45th win against the lone loss to Buster Douglas, and his 39th knockout, and certainly one of the easiest. Tyson now owns two-thirds of the heavyweight championship he had unified before he went away to prison. "Cus," he said, referring to the late Cus D'Amato, who rescued him from prison the first time and turned him to boxing, "that's two down and one to go."
  • The Philadelphia Inquirer reported the following on September 25, 1996:
Mike Tyson relinquished the World Boxing Council's heavyweight championship yesterday. The WBC declared the heavyweight title vacant and said it would hold a public purse bid for a title fight between Lennox Lewis of Britain and Oliver McCall of the United States. A New Jersey court ruled earlier this year that Tyson had to fight Lewis before facing World Boxing Association champion Bruce Seldon. But Tyson's promoter, Don King, paid Lewis $4 million to step aside. Tyson stopped Seldon in the first round to win the WBA title. The Lewis and Tyson camps could not agree to a deal for a bout between their two fighters. Tyson, therefore, was stripped of his title by the WBC, adhering to the court ruling. "We are disappointed and surprised that Tyson decided to give up the title instead of fighting Lennox," said Dino Duva, Lewis' promoter. Tyson is scheduled to put his new WBA title on the line against former undisputed champion Evander Holyfield on Nov. 9 in Las Vegas.
  • Rap artist and actor Tupac Shakur was shot four times as he was leaving the Tyson-Seldon fight. Shakur and his entourage were on their way to a nightclub when a Cadillac pulled up alongside the BMW in which he was riding and started shooting. The incident occurred at about 11:15 p.m. Shakur succumbed to his injuries on September 13.

Post-Fight Quotes

  • Mike Tyson: "I punch harder now than I did when I was younger."
  • Bruce Seldon: "You know how hurt I am right now? I came to fight, I came to win. I did not realize how hard he hits or how fast he is. He is a destroyer, and I am witness to that. The shot rattled my eyes, and I couldn't see straight. I did not train 12 weeks to come here and take a dive. I am already a millionaire. It's not about money. I'm sorry. I tried my best. He is a great fighter. He is a bad man."

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