Commission casts doubt on Tyson fight

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The Independent Online

The re-arranged fight between former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson and Buster Mathis Jnr appears to be off, after the New Jersey State Casino Control Commission voted unanimously yesterday to bar the contest from taking place in Atlantic City on 16 December because of Tyson's ties to the promoter Don King.

King's licence to promote fights in New Jersey has been suspended since he was indicted on insurance fraud charges. The first King trial ended in a mis-trial and his license remains suspended until the status of the case is determined.

The commission apparently was not satisfied by a proposal that would have had King supposedly stepping aside in favour of another promoter.

Tyson was aiming to face Mathis six weeks after their bout planned for Las Vegas on 4 November. Tyson pulled out of that fight with a broken thumb he said he suffered during training.

Lennox Lewis's handlers are prepared to guarantee Riddick Bowe $9m (pounds 6m) for their overdue heavyweight meeting in March or April.

Panos Eliades, who promotes Lewis, will make the offer to Bowe's manager, Rock Newman, today in another attempt to get the 1988 Olympic rivals together after three years of trying. "I'm still waiting for Newman to tell me what Bowe should receive for fighting Lewis," Eliades said. "This fight will be good for the sport and we are all geared up for it. It depends if they want the fight or not. I'm ready to guarantee Bowe $9m."