Mike Tyson is considered one of the most legendary boxers in the history of professional boxing. He was almost infallible during his time as a boxer and it’s not hard to see why. While he was part of WWE programming during the late 90s, it seems WWE never considered having him compete in a match.
At WrestleMania 14, 25 years ago, the WWE witnessed one of the most electrifying moments in its history, when the reigning WWE Champion, Shawn Michaels, faced off against the fierce “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. Adding to the already intense atmosphere was the presence of none other than the legendary “Baddest Man on the Planet,” Mike Tyson.
On that unforgettable night, Tyson, who served as the special outside enforcer, made his impactful entry into the WWE universe on an episode of WWE Raw. This marked the beginning of the Attitude Era and cemented WWE’s dominance over its rival, WCW. The showdown between Tyson and Austin turned out to be a ruse, as Tyson eventually betrayed Michaels and D-Generation X to align himself with the newly crowned WWE Champion.
While speaking on an episode of Grilling JR, WWE Hall Of Famer Jim Ross revealed that WWE never considered having Mike Tyson compete in a match, as it would have been too risky.
“The bottom line is we never considered Mike to wrestle. You’re not going to put an untrained brute in the ring with a guy that you’re counting on to lead the company who has a bad neck. You’re just not going to do it, it’s a risk/reward scenario that’s out of proportion. Mike was never considered, at least to my knowledge.”
Jim Ross stated that while he wasn’t privy to any discussions, the idea of Tyson wrestling in WWE might have been raised in some meetings. The ultimate goal was to bring more attention to the Shawn Michaels vs. Steve Austin match at WrestleMania 14, and Tyson was deemed as the ideal person to help achieve this. According to Ross, Tyson did an excellent job in serving as a catalyst in the lead-up to the event, helping to build excitement and anticipation.
What’s your take on this story? Sound off in the comments!