With the Olympics coming up in Japan for boxing later this month it is pertinent to remember just how important grass roots – amateur boxing is.
Without it, there would be no professional boxing.
No heavyweight champions.
Former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson knows just how crucial amateur boxing is, with it essentially saving him from a troubled youth.
In and out of detention centers until he found his calling in life.
Speaking on his latest podcast with Oscar De La Hoya, Tyson spoke candidly on amateur boxing:
“Listen, this is interesting. So for three minutes of three rounds these guys are like moving for six rounds before they attack you, they are right there trying to attack you. Ding! Clinch! They got to make those rounds. They got to get those points in. Some of those amateur fights are the toughest fights you have in your whole professional life!”
For a look back at a young Tyson in the amateurs this shows just how aggressive he was as a teenage fighter in 1981: