Friday Fire: Where Were You When…

Twenty years ago yesterday two significant events occurred. First and more importantly Nelson Mandela was released from Robben Island Prison after 27 years for protesting Apartheid rule in South Africa.

Later that night the unimaginable would occur. Approximately 8,500 miles away in Tokyo, Japan - James “Buster” Douglas, a 42-1 underdog would knockout then undefeated heavyweight champion “Iron” Mike Tyson in what would easily become one of the greatest upsets in sports history. Tyson at the time was seemingly indestructible, destroying opponents with a ferocity rarely seen in the ring.

Douglas’ victory over Tyson was one of those, “Where were you?” moments in my sports lifetime.

So I’m curious to know, where were you?

5 Responses to “Friday Fire: Where Were You When…”

  1. Melzie says:

    I may be one of a few who remember this day vividly, it was the day my one and only niece was born. Buster didn’t leave a lasting memory, but she sure has :-)

  2. HarveyDent says:

    I was in Maryville, TN attending Maryville College and watching SNL hosted by Quncy Jones in the common area of the dorm. No cable for the poor college students then so didn’t know until the end of the show when Q let it slip he felt much better than Tyson did. Everything stopped because no one present believed that Kid Dynamite had been beaten. Q must have been high but when my roommate called his Pop who confirmed it we all knew it was true. Wow. Couldn’t sleep that night because I couldn’t wrap my mind around Tyson losing but seeing Nelson Mandela for the first time in the present day was and still is inspiring.

  3. Mizzo says:

    I was in New Castle, DE with my oldest son’s Mom (he was born that December…prematurely) and her brother who was my best friend. We just got in to their parent’s house after having a couple of drinks and were so happy we didn’t miss anything. I’ll always remember how glad we were to see the entire fight because you knew how Mike did back then…you blinked and it was over. Well, we watched the fight and I think our collective mouths are still on the floor. Most shocking sports event I’ve ever seen. I remember saying that Buster had a shot after hearing (during the fight) his Mom passed because mine passes two years prior and I felt his pain.

  4. Ron Glover says:

    Was a senior in high school, I was watchin Mark Macon and the Temple Owls roast some A-10 squad so when the game was over I called my girl at the time who was watchin the fight. I tuned in around the 6th round and was listening over the phone. When Mike went down I heard her dad scream and when he was counted out dudes across the street came running out side – unbelievable!

    A week later the fight was being sold on bootleg VHS tapes…I swear.

  5. TC says:

    I was nearly 15, in N. Ireland. They showed Mr. Mandela’s release from jail live in Britain and it was one of the first moments of political awareness for me. I had gotten chills watching the Berlin Wall come down a couple months before, and then to hear this man had been in jail 27 years; well, what could you say? I looked on him – and still do – as an incredibly admirable man. And then Iron Mike getting beat? I remember the results came in overnight and my friends and I at school the next morning didn’t know the first thing about Buster Douglas. Just blew my mind.

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