Mike Tyson plans to leave the United States and seek happiness with missionary work after ending a controversial 20-year boxing career that saw him win and lose a fortune but seldom find joy.
Tyson retired here Saturday after losing for the third time in his past four fights, quitting after six rounds against Irish journeyman Kevin McBride, a humbling end for a once-mighty undisputed world heavyweight champion.
"I'm basically finished doing this stuff. I'm not going to make a fool out of myself and embarrass myself anymore," Tyson said. "It's difficult to fight when your heart isn't in it."
Tyson was pushed against the ropes by McBride and dropped to the canvas on his rear as the sixth round ended. Tyson sat dazed for 15 seconds before rising and walking slowly to his corner, the final act of his fighting career.
"It took him an eternity to get up," said Australian Jeff Fenech, Tyson's trainer. "I could see in his eyes that he didn't want to be there. I never saw him really get hurt by McBride's punches, but he was exhausted."
Having burned through 300 million dollars, and with most of his five million dollars from the McBride fight being used to pay off debts, Tyson found he had no reason to take the punishment any longer.
"I don't have anything to fight for anymore," Tyson said. "When I first started I had nothing. I wanted something. I don't want anything anymore."
Tyson was hungry when he became the youngest champion in heavyweight history in 1986 at age 20, but he lost to 42-1 underdog Buster Douglas in 1990 at Tokyo and a 1992 rape conviction led to three years in prison.
Tyson briefly returned to the top in 1996 but bit Evander Holyfield's ears in the ring during a 1997 title fight and was banned for a year. With no major triumph since, the twice-divorced father of three became bankrupt and beaten.
"At one point I thought life was about acquiring things. But as life goes on we lose more things than we gain," Tyson said. "I have wealthy children. I don't have any money but they have a great life.
"I'm not trying to screw the prettiest girl... I'm just trying to stay balanced."
Tyson, who turns 39 on June 30, doubts he can ever escape his past while living in America.
"I'll never be successful in this country. I have to go somewhere abroad," Tyson said. "I don't think I'm going to do too well in this country because I'm stigmatized .
"You have to deal in the real. I may be bizarre sometimes but I'm a natural. I understand my situation. I don't want to lose to myself. I just want to be a man who is fully aware of his situations and who is happy in life."
Tyson said that would come from missionary work, although he gave no clue about his destination once he leaves his homeland,
"I just want to do something that helps someone. I just want to help somebody," Tyson said. "I have to be helping. I have to be contributing to something. If I don't I feel emotionally dead."
Asked about going to Sudan, Tyson said: "The reason African-Americans are slaves in this country is because the Arabs sold us to the Christians".
"It's a pretty horrific situation," Tyson said. "I don't know if I'm capable of doing any missionary work without being killed."
Tyson rejected such ideas as television commentary and helping inner-city youth.
"I'm not interested in these swan songs," Tyson said. "I'm not too media friendly."
As Tyson delivered a self-effacing farewell, fans cried and touched him harder than any ring rival could have.
"Save your tears. I don't know how to handle people crying," Tyson said. "I am a cold, cruel and hard person. You must not be sensitive when it comes to me."
When a promoter prompted a standing ovation, it was too much for Tyson.
"No. No. No. Sit down. Sit down. Listen, all that is bull...," Tyson said. "I'm just a man handling all my situations. I don't need anybody applauding me. Please. People have given me enough applause in my life. Don't applaud me.
"I've been abused every way a man can be. I'm as hard and cold as they get."
underdog: one that is expected to lose a contest or struggle, as in sports or politics.（居于下风者；失败者）
stigmatize: To characterize or brand as disgraceful or ignominious（污辱使蒙受耻辱）