FightSaga

Mike Tyson: Sparring partner in 2020 mightily impressed

By Leroy Cleveland - July 4, 2022

In a much-publicized exhibition of boxing legends, Mike Tyson, then 54, and Roy Jones, Jr, then 51, fought to draw their December 2020 exhibition.

It was as good as anyone could have expected as both men showcased a few of their signature moves from the past and landed decent shots over eight 2-minute rounds.

They didn’t try to knock out each other yet weren’t playing pattycake either.

Tyson, who dictated the pace in most of the rounds, appeared to be holding back a little more than Roy.

Earlier this week, ESNews caught up with Ron Cruz, a fighter Mike sparred with in preparation for the Tyson vs Jones exhibition.

His head movement was insane, insane,” Cruz stated, heaping praise on the then-54-year-old legend.

“I will never forget, I said [to Mike] ‘I’m about to throw a 1-2, hook cross as fast as I can.'”

Cruz then showcased his speed, unleashing that combination on the heavy bag before adding, “I missed all four [of those punches].”

“I couldn’t believe it. I was like ‘no way,'” said Cruz, after mimicking Tyson’s reaction to his quick four-punch combo.

…” He’s an animal.”

When asked by ESNews if Cruz felt Tyson’s power, the young man added, “It felt like he wasn’t trying to hurt me, but he still sent me flying.”

A prime Mike Tyson, in addition to his punching power, was known for his excellent head movement, fine footwork, and overall defensive prowess.

Despite his lack of height and reach, a young Tyson was very hard to hit cleanly (if at all) due to his awesome speed and timing, and the superb techniques he learned as a young teenager in the gym.

Tags: mike tyson, ron cruz