It’s time to educate some folks on here who say Mike Tyson was the most dominant young fighter ever. He was awesome no doubt, and so much fun to watch.
However, here are some facts:
It’s hard to compare George Foreman and Tyson in their teens. George was sparring with Sonny Liston and fighting some of the best eastern block fighters in the world who couldn’t go pro in route to a gold medal.
Mike missed the olympic team, turned pro and dominated a list of journeyman and Jesse Ferguson. Then Mitch Green and Quick Tillis (the only other notable names) took him the distance. Opinions may vary, but the advantage in the teens goes to Foreman for winning gold. Tyson failed to even make the squad.
Any real pro comparison starts at age 20 because Foreman turn pro at 20.
At 20, 21, and 22, Foreman had 10 1st round KOs, 7 2nd round KOs, 5 3rd round KOs and 4 4th round KOs in 32 fights. That’s 81% KO rate in the first 4 rounds.
At 20, 21, and 22, Mike had 2 first found KOs, 4 2nd round KOs, no 3rd round KOs and 1 4th round KOs in 12 fights. That’s a 58% KO rate in the first 4 rounds.
At 23 and 24, Foremen knocked 100% of his seven opponents out in 1 or 2 rounds.
At 23 and 24, Tyson knocked 50% of his six opponents out in the 1 or 2 rounds and lost to Buster Douglas.
You can argue the teen dominance if you want. And yes Mike won at belt at 20. George wouldn’t get that opportunity until he was 24 when ”DOWN GOES FRAIZER!” Basically both destroyed most everyone in their path in their teens through age 22. Although each had a few tough amateur losses.
The sheer dominance numbers don’t lie though. From age 20 to 24, George Foreman knocked and incredible 84.6% of his 39 opponents out in the first 4 rounds.
From age 20 to 24, Mike Tyson knocked 52.6% of his 19 opponents out in the first 4 rounds.
85% to 53% from age 20 to 24 isn’t that close. Winning a gold medal vs failing to even make the Olympic team isn’t that close. Losing your belt to unanimous first ballot HOF Muhammad Ali vs losing it to Buster Douglas isn’t that close. And in their second act (their comebacks) it’s all George.
These are just facts. I loved watching both fight. But George Foreman’s resume though age 24 is simply more dominant. And after age 24 the disparity grows.
After this post, fans had mixed reactions:
Andrew Smith: “Lies, lies and damn statistics. Stupid comparison as Tyson turned pro before 20, how about taking each fighters record from when they turned pro to get a true comparison? You also have to factor in that Foreman was huge for a heavyweight in the 70s and that Tyson was small for one in the late 80s when they were all much bigger than in the 70s. You can’t compare different eras eg Marciano was tiny by comparison to modern heavyweights but he was the best by a mile during his time 🤷🏻♂️”
Scott Hovsepian: “Tyson won the belt at 20 years old in only his 2nd year as a pro while Foreman spent years fighting cans to pad his record before facing a ranked opponent. There’s no comparison!”
Jierui Sio Bagyaosi: “Yes but no doubt that Mike Tyson was the most youngest Heavy weight who become the famous world champion in world at age of 20 that till now it’s unbreakable and that you can’t compare to George Foreman coz Foreman became a world champion at the age of 24 LMAO..”
Nick Zagorov: “George was slow like a billdozer but very powerful, its true they avoided each other to fight. Morrision dismantled Tyson and Mike would of killed Morrision so dont be to sure George beats him so easily. They were both great I agree there.”