Syracuse (WSYR-TV) - He was once the most feared boxer inside the ring - but now - one of boxing's most recognizable names is getting involved in the sport outside the ropes.
Mike Tyson is back in boxing and his return is happening at Turning Stone Resort Friday night with one exception.
The hall of famer and former world champion won't be putting on the gloves. Instead he'll be putting on a fight card, his first as a boxing promoter.
“I fought in the Empire State Games up here - I went to Lake George, I went to Lake Placid, I spent a great deal of time in Rome, NY. You'll see when the fights come a bunch of my friends will come from Charlton (Saratoga County) to visit the fights. I have such affinity with this place. I grew up not long ago here and I won the State Championship here in Syracuse," Tyson said during a press conference at Turning Stone Resort on Wednesday.
Not too long after the State Championship was the meteoric rise to heavyweight champion of the world and a run as the most dominant man in the sport.
With all the success also came the troubles he encountered over the years, but Tyson has rebounded and seemed happy, excited and at times admittedly nervous as the newest promoter in the sport.
"The ESPN Friday Night Fight series was supposed to have their finale last week and when the team from Iron Mike Productions put this event together, ESPN extended the series to make this the series finale,” said boxing promoter Greg Cohen.
"I just enjoy being around these guys. I understand what these guys are going through, I understand what they're going through psychologically, emotionally. I know their barometers. I know sometimes they're frightened, but we want people to respect us, we want people to know we have something to offer as well in the world,” said Tyson.
It's somewhat surprising for Tyson to be back in boxing as he says his retirement from the ring in 2005 was the best thing that ever happened to him.
The hall of famer says he's excited to get back into the sport again so he can help young fighters make their way through the sport and avoid the pitfalls he experienced during his career.