The Bite Fight

Former undisputed world heavyweight champion Mike Tyson courted controversy throughout his boxing career, but never more so than during his rematch with Evander Holyfield for the WBA Heavyweight Championship at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas on June 28, 1997. In the first meeting between the pair, at the same venue less than eight months earlier, Holyfield had comprehensively outboxed Tyson, eventually winning by technical knockout in the eleventh round. It’s no surprise that the fight was twice held at Vegas, since stateside it’s key to both sports ans casino life. Whereas in the online world today we may instead check out the Online Casino Bluebook, in the late casinos, if just wanted casino or sports based excitement in the flesh, Las Vegas was the place to go.

The rematch started in similar fashion, with Holyfield dominating the first two rounds, but it was a series of shocking incidents in the third round that led the contest to be known as the ‘Bite Fight’. With forty seconds left on the clock, Tyson, incensed by what he believed to be a deliberate headbutt by his opponent, sunk his teeth into Holyfield’s right ear, removing a one-inch chunk of cartilage, which he subsequently spat out onto the canvas.

Referee Mills Lane stopped the contest for Holyfield to be examined by the ringside doctor, who concluded that, despite profuse bleeding from his bitten ear, Holyfield was fit to continue. Tyson narrowly avoided immediate disqualification and was, instead, deducted two points. Barely had the fight resumed, though, when Tyson bit Holyfield on his left ear. The second bite was not discovered until the end of the third round but, at that point, Lane disqualified Tyson, who attempted to attack Holyfield and his entourage and had to be restrained by the police.

Tyson faced a lifetime ban from the sport, but was eventually fined $3 million, given community service and although his boxing licence was revoked, indefinitely, by the Nevada State Athletic Commission – a suspension that, under federal law, had to be honoured throughout the United States – it was restored 15 months later.

So many big fights have been held at the MGM Grand over the years, and indeed at Caesars Palace, both in Las Vegas. . The next big fight for boxing fans will be the third encounter between Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder at T-Mobile Arena in Paradise, Nevada on October 9th. It’s available on PPV if you can’t make it in the flesh of course.  The heady combination of sports (which inevitably results in sports betting) and casinos in Nevada make it both a sports fans and hedonists dream. There are so many options available on the casino side of things from slots machines as far as the eye can see, to roulette, blackjack tables and more. Serious money poker competitions routinely take place in Las Vegas and if you’re looking for somewhere to stay there are more hotel rooms in Vegas than just about anywhere you could care to mention.

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