What Mike Tyson's Opponent Roy Jones Jr. Has Said About Fighting Boxing Legend

Mike Tyson's next opponent has described the former heavyweight champion as a "giant monster" and depicted the upcoming fight as a "David against Goliath" scenario.

Last week, Tyson announced he will fight Roy Jones Jr. in an eight-round exhibition bout in California on September 12, returning to the ring for the first time since a short-lived exhibition tour in 2006.

While Tyson turned 54 at the end of last month and hasn't fought professionally since retiring in the sixth round of his 10-round bout against Kevin McBride 15 years ago, Jones Jr. admitted he wasn't relishing the prospect of squaring up to the former undisputed world heavyweight champion.

"His legs are huge and his thighs are huge. His arms are huge and his neck is huge," he told World Boxing News.

"It's very risky, yes. But God's in control of all."

Jones Jr. held multiple world championships in four weight classes during a career that spanned almost three decades before retiring in 2018 and is three years younger than Tyson.

However, he acknowledged his opponent looked nothing like a man six years short of his 60th birthday.

"[Previously] I was beating everybody in every weight class I was in, so what you gonna do? It's like David and Goliath. He's a giant monster, we know," he continued.

"I'm little David and all I've got is God on my side, which is all I'm gonna need."

Tyson first hinted he was working on an unexpected return in May when he declared "I'm back" in a short clip posted on Instagram, which showed him ferociously working out with one of his trainers.

In the video, Tyson looked in incredible shape, hitting the pads with ferocious intensity and showing remarkable hand speed.

A gruelling training regime has reportedly helped the Brooklyn native shed 60 kilograms after his weight ballooned to 172 kilograms after his retirement.

"It's because I can do it. And I believe other people believe they can do it too," Tyson told ESPN's First Take after the fight was announced last week.

"Just because we are 54, it doesn't mean that we have to start a new career and our lives are totally over. Not when you feel as beautiful as I do, and I'm sure that other people feel the same way."

Two-time world heavyweight champion George Foreman, however, shared Jones Jr.'s concerns, warning the upcoming exhibition bout could pose a serious risk for both fighters.

"There's a time when you gotta worry about your health," Foreman told TMZ Sports.

"But it's a beautiful thing that they would even come out.

"Maybe they can even name a charity or something for the recipient of the funds. I think it's good to come out but its gotta be a fun thing, but I hope one does not hit the other.

"I would just tell them it's really dangerous but when you make up your mind to do something like that, you can't tell them 'don't do it.' They're not gonna hear that."

Few boxers are more aware of the pitfalls of returning to the ring than Foreman, who retired in March 1977 with a 45-2 record after losing by unanimous decision to Jimmy Young.

Almost exactly a decade later, Foreman made a comeback at the age of 38 and fought another 34 times—winning on 31 occasions—before eventually retiring for the final time in 1997.

Foreman, however, briefly considered returning to the ring in 2004 at the age of 55, only to be talked out of it by his wife.

Mike Tyson
Mike Tyson performs his one man show 'Undisputed Truth' in the Music Box at the Borgata on March 6 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Donald Kravitz/Getty