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When Boxing Legend Mike Tyson Found Himself In An Early Hours Brawl In Harlem

Mike Tyson speaks out over his infamous brawl with Mitch Green
Mike Tyson speaks out over his infamous brawl with Mitch Green

Mike Tyson famously once said “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth” and on this day in 1988, rival heavyweight Mitch Green found out the meaning of that quote the hard way.

Green was a decent heavyweight in his heyday and became just the second person to take a prime Iron Mike the distance when they met in the ring at Madison Square Gardens in 1986 - even managing to knock out one of boxing’s ultimate bad boy’s teeth! 

Green took the unanimous decision defeat to Tyson bitterly to say the least and ended up taking a seven-year hiatus away from the sport, fading into the background of an already jam-packed heavyweight division.

Then, in the early hours of the morning on August 23rd 1988, Green, still with a bone to pick, heard rumours that Tyson had been spotted with friends shopping at Dapper Dan's, a clothing store in Harlem (Tyson was there to purchase a $850 jacket with the words ‘Don’t Believe The Hype’ stitched across the back).

After scouring the streets of New York, Green found his potential prey, who just so happened to now be the Undisputed Heavyweight Champion of the World, and demanded a rematch with Iron Mike.

It wasn’t a diplomatic meeting between the two giants. Green allegedly threw the first punch to which Tyson responded with one of his own. It not only closed Green's eye but also left his nose requiring stitches (“everybody has a plan” is particularly apt here).

Despite winning this unofficial heavyweight contest, Tyson didn’t escape the scuffle unscathed and a resulting broken hand meant that his title fight with Britain’s Frank Bruno had to be postponed.

Below you can check out a fascinating video that covers both sides of the infamous brawl.

Moral of the story here? You must absolutely never pick a fight with Mike Tyson. It seldom ends well.

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