Mike Tyson is saying,
"Hey, well, check this out. I was planning on killing myself. My wife was just my friend at that time and I asked her to spend some time in Vegas. She got pregnant and she had to go to prison in two weeks. When she came back, she started talking about building a company.
"When she's saying this, I'm saying, 'Look at the state we're in.' I didn't want to bust her bubble. She'd probably leave me. And I kept saying, 'Yes baby, yes baby.' I saw Chazz Palminteri (in a one-man show). I said, 'Baby, I think I could do this.' We staged some shows. I took questions. Someone who worked for Spike (Lee) said, 'You've got to see this. Let's take it on Broadway.'
"It all started from my wife telling me, 'We can do this.' My daughter died. I just wanted to live a different life. Living life is very difficult for me. I just wanted to be a savage fighter. I had a paradigm shift in life. In '08, '09, I wanted to kill myself. I was just OD-ing every night. I couldn't believe I was waking up."
As Tyson speaks, I'm typing as fast as I can. It's a national conference call for Tyson to announce he's going into boxing promotion. He's on the line talking fast, talking Brooklyn, talking how I understand talking.
And I'm learning. He wanted to kill himself. His wife, Kiki, went to prison (six months, minimum security). He knows Chazz Palminteri. I don't know Chazz Palminteri. Life is difficult for Tyson. He knows what a paradigm shift is. I'm not sure I do. He couldn't believe he kept waking up.
And I'm thinking this is a man who knows Death. This man has walked with Death, invited Death home for coffee and crumb cake on a Tuesday night and talked about the fruitlessness of life and asked, 'Does God exist and if he exists, does he care?' And Death didn't say a word. And Tyson cried because Death would not take him then and there.
Mike Tyson is saying:
"All of them (boxing promoters), they never told you the truth. And I put my hands on them, which you should never do. I was a spoiled kid. I'll never do that again, striking people. I forgive those guys and, hopefully, they forgive me, the ones who stole my money. I'm sorry. I'm really sorry."
And while he's talking, I'm thinking this is the most honest man alive. Not the best. The most honest. He can't help revealing himself, that he hit people out of the ring, that he could be a brute, that he forgives, that he wants to be forgiven, that his life is the history of mankind.
Mike Tyson is saying:
"You'll never hear (fighters) say, 'Mike Tyson stole something from me.' And, hopefully, they'll never end up like me. I'm broke. Where are my friends? They done left me."
And I'm thinking Tyson, who could knock you cross-eyed with his right uppercut, was a mark outside the ring, lost a fortune. And the guy seems happy.
Read all of the PD's fire coverage here