Tyson’s big month: Induction, promoting
Former undisputed heavyweight champion Mike Tyson is in the midst of a big month.
On Saturday, Tyson, a 2011 International Hall of Fame inductee, will receive similar honors from The Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame, whose organization director is longtime boxing commentator and historian, Rich Marotta.
A 47-year-old Las Vegas resident, Tyson will be inducted along with former champions Sugar Ray Leonard, Mike McCallum and the late Diego Corrales.
The foursome are among 19 inductees over eight categories who will be honored by the Nevada Hall of Fame, including Showtime boxing commentator, Al Bernstein, whose story was told by Yahoo!Sports.
On Aug. 23, Tyson will be in Verona, N.Y., promoting “Tyson Is Back,” in association with Acquinity Sports CEO Garry Jonas and Greg Cohen Promotions, at Turning Stone Resort Casino.
“This is something I never anticipated. I’m very excited and looking forward to catering to the public,” said Tyson, of the inaugural venture of Iron Mike Promotions. “It’s really all about insuring a good night of boxing.”
The event represents a homecoming for Tyson, who is originally from the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn.
“Upstate New York is very special to me and brings back nostalgic memories when I was a determined amateur on the rise,” said Tyson.
“I want to be there and guide my fighters as they take these same stepping stones in their quest for greatness. We plan to put on an exciting and entertaining fight on August 23.”
The card will feature Brooklyn-based IBF junior lightweight titleholder Argenis Mendez (21-2, 11 knockouts) of the Dominican Republic against Canada’s Arash Usmanee (20-1, 10 KOs), a native of Afghanistan, and featherweight contender Jesus Cuellar (22-1, 18 KOs), of Buenos Aires, Argentina, against the Dominican Republic’s Claudio Marrero (14-0, 11 KOs). The event will be televised on ESPN2’s Friday Night Fights.
Cuban featherweight Alexei “The Hurricane” Collado (16-0, 15 KOs) takes on Hugo “Guerrero” Partida (19-4-2, 15 KOs), and welterweight Ed “The Lion” Paredes (33-3-1, 22 KOs), who is 12-0-1 with nine knockouts in his past 13 fights, meets Noe “Platanito” Bolanos (24-8-1, 16 KOs).
The undercard will also boast light heavyweight Ryan “Big Youth” McKenzie (13-0, 11 KOs) against an opponent to be determined, middleweight Antoine Douglas (8-0, 6 KOs) opposite Russell “Spiderman” Jordan (15-10, 10 KOs), and junior lightweight Albert “Prince” Bell (1-0, 1 KO) faces Angel Siguenza (0-1) in a four-rounder.
“Mike’s already the best boxing promoter in the business, because when Mike talks, boxing people listen. Mike can bring more attention and exposure to a fighter than anyone else out there,” said Jonas, also CEO of Iron Mike Promotions.
“With his continued success and rise as an entertainer, Mike’s progression into being a very successful promoter made a lot of sense. I appreciate very much that Mike, his wife Kiki, and brother-in-law Azim, chose us to partner with. It validates the things we’ve been doing in boxing for the past two years, as well as the plans that we have. We plan on doing things differently. I think boxing fans and sports fans in general will appreciate what’s to come.”
Lem Satterfield can be reached at [email protected]