Mike Tyson Reveals the Reason Behind Getting Pet Tigers

Published 02/23/2021, 10:30 PM EST
LAS VEGAS – CIRCA 1989: Mike Tyson poses with his white tiger during an interview at his home. (Photo by: The Ring Magazine via Getty Images)


Mike Tyson is a name synonymous with greatness and controversy in boxing. The former heavyweight champion of the world had his highs and lows in the sport. One thing he made headlines for was his pet tigers.

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‘Iron Mike’ was a big fan of having pets. The tigers were not the only pets he had during his career. Tyson has also had his pigeons. However, he has now explained his decision to get pet tigers.

ATLANTIC CITY, NJ – MARCH 06: Mike Tyson performs his one man show “Undisputed Truth” in the Music Box at the Borgata on March 6, 2020 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. (Photo by Donald Kravitz/Getty Images)

Speaking on his podcast, ‘Hotboxin with Mike Tyson’, the famous boxer faced a question about his pet tigers. He explained it by saying, “All down to my insecurities, I guess. I wanted something that ferocious to love me.” This comment showed it was something a lot deeper than just the status of owning a pet tiger.

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He then admitted it was weird and explained, “If you look at him and he see you like acting weird, he’s going to kill you. He don’t want you, only wants to be alone.

“And I want that to love me. Exactly, hundred percent.” This comment showed the personality of Mike Tyson in his prime.

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Mike Tyson has toned it down over the recent years

These antics from ‘Iron Mike’ were a common theme when he was a superstar in the sport. Moreover, he would often get into trouble outside the ring. In addition, his pre-fight press-conferences and face-offs were fiery affairs.

However, the former heavyweight champion has since toned down his ways. He has explained how he got things under control and credited rehab for saving his life. ‘The Baddest Man on the Planet’ also explained the reason for his eventful pre-fight obligations.

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LAS VEGAS, NV – AUGUST 09: Former boxer Mike Tyson inducts Evander Holyfield (not pictured) into the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame at the second annual induction gala at the New Tropicana Las Vegas on August 9, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Tyson has admitted that getting pet tigers was a huge mistake and that he regrets his decision. Therefore, we now know it was a decision ‘Iron Mike’ made when he was not in the best of situations.

What did you make of this explanation from Mike Tyson? Do you think he was justified in getting tigers as his personal pets?

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Leonardo Carvalho

845 articles

Leonardo Carvalho is a Boxing Writer for EssentiallySports. Before working as a boxing web journalist, Leonardo dabbled in roles ranging from an SEO specialist to a Chegg expert. Alongside his current role, Leonardo runs a YouTube channel where he combines his passion for fitness with sports.

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