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Mike Tyson's Ear-Eating: Funny or Disturbing?

Jay KaneContributor IFebruary 14, 2009

Well, both.

When Mike Tyson took a bite out of Evander Holyfield's ear, it was both funny and very disturbing.

Watching the fight with several friends that night, I found the whole spectacle pathetic at best. When Holyfield started complaining to the referee, I remember being confused at first, like everyone.

America saw Holyfield jump up and down and spin around; meanwhile, Tyson was swallowing something. There was total chaos in the ring, and everyone was totally confused as blood ran down Holyfield's neck and chest.

When it became clear that Tyson had taken a bite out of Holyfield's ear, I was first in disbelief, and then laughing hysterically. Next, I was totally amazed that something like that could happen; then, I was laughing again.

Few things in life have evoked such a wide range of emotions in me as Tyson did that night.

Tyson's time had passed by this point in his career; most of his fights then were pretty comical in one way or the other. But there was a time when Tyson was a monster, a boxing machine in the ring.

But that time actually came before Tyson's first title fight.  It was when Cus D'Amato, Tyson's original trainer, passed away in 1985 from pneumonia that Tyson's career took a downturn.

Under his second trainer, Kevin Rooney, Tyson did become the undisputed heavyweight champion at an age of 20 years and 144 days.

He was the youngest undisputed champion ever then, in 1988, but his fighting style was already changing for the worse as he strayed from D'Amato's teachings.

By 1990, Tyson's championship titles were gone, and so was he—to prison. Released in 1995, he looked good for a while, but there was a big chip on his shoulder after his jail time.

Holyfield knocked that chip off. Too bad it cost him an ear.

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