Notorious boxer Mike Tyson, at 54 years of age, is stepping back into the ring after more than 15 years, with an exhibition bout set for September.
The eight-round match, pitting Tyson against 51-year-old boxing champ Roy Jones Jr., will take place on Sept. 12, 2020, starting at 9 p.m. ET. The fight will be available on pay-per-view outlets as well as on music-video app Triller (also for a fee), which has exclusive streaming rights to a 10-part docuseries featuring behind-the-scenes prefight footage. Triller plans to release two episodes per week leading up to the match.
It remains to be seen how many people will pay for the Tyson-Jones fight, titled “Frontline Battle.” As of yet, there’s no pricing information for the PPV event.
Tyson is the former undisputed world heavyweight boxing champion with a record of 50 wins, 6 losses, and 2 no contests. His most recent official fight was on June 11, 2005, against Irish-born heavyweight Kevin McBride, who defeated Tyson in a TKO. From 1992-95, Tyson served three years of a six-year term in an Indiana prison after being convicted of rape.
The Tyson-Jones fight is the first event of a series produced under Mike Tyson’s new Legends Only League, a sports venture owned by Tyson and Eros Innovations, an investment group affiliated with Eros International. Under the pact, all rights for the “Frontline Battle” are controlled by Triller. In addition, Legends Only League and Eros Innovations have partnered with Triller on future boxing events.
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The three-hour live “Frontline Battle” event, in addition to the main fight, will include what promoters promise will be “significant undercard matches” as well as musical performances.
Tyson launched his boxing career at 20 when he became the youngest boxer to win a heavyweight title, a record he still holds. Throughout his career, Tyson held the title of Undisputed World Heavyweight Champion from 1987 to 1990 and was also the first heavyweight boxer to simultaneously hold the WBA, WBC and IBF titles.
Jones, who started out in 1989, has won numerous championships in the middleweight, super middleweight, light heavyweight, and heavyweight divisions. In 2003 Jones won the WBA heavyweight title, becoming the first former middleweight champion to win a Heavyweight title in 106 years and has simultaneously held a record seven belts including WBC, WBA, IBF, IBO, NABF, WBF, and IBA light heavyweight championships.
The exhibition fight has been sanctioned by the California State Athletic Commission. Producers include Tyson, Eros Innovations’ Sophie Watts, Johnny Ryan Jr., Azim Spicer, Kiki Tyson, Ryan Kavanaugh and Bobby Sarnevesht.
The announcement of the Tyson-Jones comes after Triller’s recent acquisition of Halogen Networks, which will power the streaming version of the “Frontline Battle” PPV and other live-streaming components of the event.
Triller, which itself was acquired by Proxima Media, claims its app has been downloaded more than 140 million times. The AI-powered music video app has been used by the likes of Alicia Keys, Cardi B, Marshmello, Roddy Ricch and Eminem, the company says.