By Geoffrey Ciani: On November 18th, 1989, undisputed world heavyweight champion Iron Mike Tyson was scheduled to defend his crown in Edmonton, Canada against challenger Donovan Razor Ruddock. At that point in time Iron Mike was universally recognized as the baddest man on the planet. But the fight was postponed in late October because Tyson was suffering from a condition known as chondritis, and the fight was ultimately canceled altogether.
Fast forward 18 months to the day, and the two would finally meet on March 18th, 1991. By that point in time, Tyson had lost his undisputed championship against Buster Douglas, who in turn lost it in his very next bout against Evander Holyfield.
It was a bit of an interesting situation, because Holyfield was the undisputed world heavyweight champion, who held a rightful claim to the lineal heavyweight crown along with all three major alphabet bodies of the day, the WBA, WBC, and IBF. Former champion Mike Tyson was the universally recognized #1 contender according to all three alphabet bodies, and Razor Ruddock was the universally #2 ranked contender by all.
The fight between Tyson and Ruddock was an elimination bout where the winner would earn the right to challenge Holyfield. But because of a somewhat controversial ending that was deemed premature by many boxing observers, Tyson and Ruddock ran it back in an immediate rematch a few months later on June 28th, 1991. The rivalry between Tyson and Ruddock was a memorable one, and theoretically it was historically significant due to its inherent importance as a title eliminator. Their two bouts were defined by intense action where both power punchers exchanged a great abundance of hard clubbing shots that spread across 19 entertaining rounds of action.
This edition of Rummy’s Corner will provide a quick recap and review on the classic heavyweight rivalry between the two universally top ranked contenders at the start of 1991 – which included former undisputed world heavyweight champion Iron Mike Tyson, and the #2 ranked contender Donovan Razor Ruddock. This is Rummy’s Corner (produced and narrated by Geoffrey Ciani).