Tyson vs. Jones Jr.: Early Fight Predictions, PPV Schedule and More

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistNovember 23, 2020

FILE - In this Aug. 2, 2019, file photo, Mike Tyson attends a celebrity golf tournament in Dana Point, Calif. Tyson and Roy Jones Jr. got permission from California's athletic commission to return to the boxing ring next month because their fight would be strictly an exhibition of their once-unparalleled skills. (Photo by Willy Sanjuan/Invision/AP, File)
Willy Sanjuan/Associated Press

While many across the country will still be recovering from Thanksgiving, two legendary boxers will be stepping inside the ring for what once would have qualified as a dream fight.

Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr. are clearly past their prime. Tyson, 54, retired after his 2005 loss to Kevin McBride, while the 51-year-old Jones prolonged his career with a number of fights against nondescript opponents.

Still, plenty of fans will be eager to see what they do in Saturday's contest.


When: Saturday, Nov. 28 at 9 p.m. ET


This is only an exhibition, so it won't count toward anybody's record and doesn't fit into the traditional favorite/underdog dynamic.

Still, Jones has to get the early edge. Not only is he three years younger than Tyson, but he also fought as recently as February 2018 when he earned a unanimous-decision win over Scott Sigmon. The former four-division champion has dropped just one bout since 2011.

Tyson was a force of nature at his best, and fans have longed to get just one more look at something resembling the "Iron Mike" who wiped out the heavyweight division in the mid-to-late 1980s.

It wasn't surprising when his brief workout video from May went viral.

Mike Tyson @MikeTyson

I’m a Bad Boy for Life. Watch #BadBoysforLife now on DVD Blueray @realmartymar #willsmith #stillthebaddestmanontheplanet https://t.co/R9Zmz19GFm

He looks to be in great shape, too.

ESPN Ringside @ESPNRingside

Two weeks out and @MikeTyson is yoked 👀 https://t.co/VZ1Ebr1nmP

Tyson's return to boxing may not be a one-off occurrence, either.

"I don't know. I might do this for a while," he told Peter Rosenberg of ESPN. "Let's check this stuff out. It would be so awesome if we could do this all around the world and fight the best fighter in that country, exhibitions with this guy in that country, exhibitions all over the world. Wouldn't that be great?"

In order to make that a reality, Tyson probably needs to at least look respectable against Jones. The bloom might come off the rose if fans get the impression Iron Mike is well and truly past it—even within the context of exhibition bouts.

Tyson and Jones will likely need a round to feel one another out. Once the bell rings for Round 2, though, this could turn into a fun spectacle as the competitive juices get flowing.

Assuming Tyson still has at least a shred of his once-incredible knockout power, he can end this with one punch. Jones will be too smart to get caught in a compromising position, though, and will come away the winner.