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MFFL
01-29-2002, 11:17 PM
Leaving Las Vegas - Decision keeps Tyson-Lewis bout out of Nevada
Posted: Tuesday January 29, 2002 7:11 PM
Updated: Tuesday January 29, 2002 11:57 PM

LAS VEGAS (AP) -- Mike Tyson was knocked out of a rich fight against Lennox Lewis in this gaming capital when he was denied a license Tuesday after a sometimes contentious hearing.

The Nevada State Athletic Commission voted 4-1 against giving Tyson a license for an April 6 fight against heavyweight champion Lewis, saying Tyson could not control his emotions.

Tyson left the hearing minutes before the vote, and his advisers said they weren't sure about the status of the fight.

"I didn't think I was going to get license, but [adviser] Shelly Finkel was forcing me to come anyway," Tyson said as he headed for limousine.

Tyson, who can apply for a license outside Nevada, was ordered to appear before the commission because of a brawl at a news conference last week in New York.

Asked if he thought there would be a fight somewhere on April 6, Tyson said, "No, it doesn't look like there'll be a fight. I don't know. I think Lennox is a coward. I'm going to fight him any time I see him in the street."

The proposed fight would be a joint pay-per-view venture between Showtime, which has a contract with Tyson, and HBO, which has a deal with Lewis.

"We are disappointed that we won't be able to present this event in Las Vegas," said Marina Capurro, vice president of communications for Showtime.

"As the television partner of the heavyweight champion, we will sit down and talk with Lennox Lewis and discuss the situation as soon as possible," said Ross Greenburg, president of HBO Sports.

Voting to grant Tyson a license was commission chairman Luther Mack.

The commissioners faced a dilemma because the fight would have meant millions of dollars to the Las Vegas economy, which was hurt by the terrorist acts of Sept. 11. But the commissioners said they based their decision on Tyson's actions and not the effect losing the fight would have on the economy.

"We will not tolerate this kind of behavior from Mr. Tyson, not in boxing and not in Nevada," said commissioner Amy Ayoub.

If Tyson had gotten a license, the host for the major money match would have been the MGM Grand, the site of Tyson's infamous disqualification for biting Evander Holyfield's ears in 1997.

The denial came after a 2 1/2-hour hearing in which Tyson was forced to explain his conduct in incidents ranging from his arrest following a traffic altercation in Maryland to a melee that involved Lewis at the news conference in New York.

In sports coat and tie, Tyson sat at a table facing the commissioners and defended himself.

"I'm no Mother Teresa," Tyson said. "I'm not Charles Manson either. Just treat me equal."

It was the second time the Nevada commission has acted against Tyson.

Following the "Bite Fight," the commission fined him $3 million and revoked his license. He did get a license 15 months later and fought twice in Nevada.

In the second of those fights, Tyson knocked down Norris with a punch after bell ended the first round. Norris claimed he hurt his knee and couldn't continue. The fight was ruled a no-contest.

No disciplinary action was taken after Norris fight, but commission let it be known it would be happy if Tyson fought elsewhere.

TheKid
01-30-2002, 11:16 AM
He's a fool..