When Mike Tyson came close to beating up NBA legend Michael Jordan at party in 1988

In a captivating revelation from 1988, Mike Tyson and Michael Jordan were on the brink of a clash.

As narrated by Rory Holloway in his book “Taming the Beast: The Untold Story of Team Tyson,” the setting was the birthday celebration of NFL luminary Richard Dent in Chicago. Attendees included boxing promoter Don King, Tyson’s co-manager Rory Holloway, and of course, the heavyweight champion himself, Mike Tyson.

 “I’m telling the server to water his drinks down ‘cause I see where this is going. Mike stares across the table at Michael Jordan. He says, ‘Hey man, you think I’m stupid? I know you f—-d with my b—h.’ “Jordan looks like he just seen a ghost. ‘I know you messed with her,’ Mike says. ‘You can tell me.’ Jordan, it’s obvious he just wants to get up and run.”

During this time, Tyson, undefeated and at the pinnacle of his career, was facing personal turmoil in his marriage with actress Robin Givens. The ambiance was charged, exacerbated by Tyson’s consumption of his favored beverage, a Long Island Tea, which had a reputation for loosening his inhibitions.

“It was a circus, for real, that night… Mike telling everyone he’s going to bust Jordan’s ass. Jordan’s dressed sharp as always and he can’t get out of there fast enough.”

In a moment charged with tension, Tyson confronted Jordan, accusing him of involvement with Givens prior to Tyson’s relationship with her. Jordan, taken aback, maintained composure, although Holloway vividly recounts the palpable discomfort in the atmosphere.

As Don King attempted to diffuse the escalating situation, Holloway and John Horne, Tyson’s co-managers, struggled to restrain Tyson, who proclaimed his intent to confront Jordan physically. Jordan, eager to depart the tumultuous scene, found himself uncomfortably trapped in the exchange.

Years later, differing accounts emerged regarding the intensity of the confrontation. Mike Ditka, present at the gathering, dismissed the incident as fueled by alcohol-induced bravado, asserting Jordan’s unlikelihood to engage in such altercations.

Richard Dent corroborated elements of the encounter, acknowledging Tyson’s mention of Givens but downplaying any significant altercation. Despite varying recollections, the aura of tension and the specter of confrontation lingered over the evening.

“It’s silly. Michael Jordan is not going to get into an altercation with anyone. He’s a class guy. First of all, the stupidest thing in the world is alcohol. When you drink, you get that mouth running sometimes. That’s probably what happened.”

Ultimately, the true extent of the confrontation remains shrouded in ambiguity. Yet, the mere convergence of Tyson and Jordan, titans of their respective sports, at a single dinner event, remains an indelible chapter in the annals of sports lore.