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Who was the real winner? November 28th 2020 in Los Angeles’ Staple Centre, was an event that on paper was said to be an exhibition fight. Even as an exhibition, Mike Tyson vs Roy Jones Jr is a dream, not even the late Burt Sugar, a god amongst boxing pundits would have predicted would happen. We can safely bet he would laugh that such a duel would take place.

But it did, 2020 has been a year that has been more than full of surprises. The fight itself iconic and even better the commentating by the likes of Snoop Dogg. As the fight started, he said, “This shit like two of my uncles fighting at a family barbecue”.

Absorbing this iconic event and all its intrigues, let’s talk about the boxing that was on display. One word to describe it is, “remarkable”. The truth of boxing is that these two living legends still have it. And more so, the fight being an exhibition or not, was a demonstration to young boxers and even the current reigning heavyweights, on what boxing is.


Besides the draw and who should have won and all the petty nonsense, for some of us, we simply took in the moment analysing both fighters. For starters one of the things you noticed about Roy Jones is that fighting Mike Tyson, his advantage laid in fighting from a distance and controlling this long distance. Or sticking to the basic of going in and out. He controls the distance controls the fight. With Mike Tyson, him controlling the distance means covering the distance and getting inside.

Roy looked good staying on the outside and making Mike Tyson miss at times, and his tiredness as he would admit at the end of the bout came from Mike Tyson’s devastating body shots. The body shots came when Mike and Roy were clinching, or Mike was inside. Expressing himself with the deadliest of intent. It was not ageing that tired Roy but those body shots.

The infamous gazelle punch was seen a few times by Mike Tyson, as he would launch it and hit Roy Jones Jr. The bobbing and weaving was a 10/10 and Roy’s elusiveness and cutting of angles were masterful. It is just that he never expected Mike Tyson’s body shots to be as devastating. On the matter of who won? Boxing did. That is who won. This so-called exhibition fight should be a tutorial for boxers. Showing the different styles of boxing, how to judge distance and how to move. A lesson in boxing, the sweet science.  



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