POSTED:  Friday, July 19th, 2019                                       (11/28/2020)

Mike Tyson Tells ESPN He "Had No Idea" About Balrog


American boxing legend Mike Tyson recently made an entertaining appearance on ESPN's eSports show. After Mike went a few rounds in Mario Kart 8, ESPN's Arda Ocal brought up Balrog from Street Fighter. Arda then asked Tyson if he knew about the history behind Balrog's name being changed from "Mike Bison" in the Japanese version of Street Fighter 2 to "Balrog" overseas. In case you didn't know, Capcom originally changed the character's name in the West as they were indeed concerned about legal liability at the time due to the obvious likeness and similar-sounding name. To Arda's question, Tyson replied "No, I have no idea." Wait just a sec. Did the Mike Bison / Balrog likeness really elude the Mike Tyson for the past 28 years?!?  I don't actually believe that, but if it's somehow true...

      Somebody shoulda told Mike.

He hit the money shot and everything...

After joking about a future "lawsuit" like it's the mid 90's again... Arda asked Mike what he thinks about the character Balrog after showing him some classic SF2 images of the iconic fighting game pugilist (above). "I'm really honored with that impersonation of me." Mike responded. The video below contains the full interview with Mike.

My two cents:  I think Tyson was either confused by the question, or was just going along with the show. Or maybe, possibly... he knew at one time but forgot? Because, umm...

Mike Tyson with a Balrog cosplayer at San Diego Comic-Con 2014.

At San Diego Comic-Con 2014, you mean to tell me this Balrog cosplayer didn't... confirm that Mike knew? If you happen to be this Balrog cosplayer in real life, we need to talk. I have questions.

Either Tyson forgot... because... (I don't know why he'd forget such a thing)... or Tyson is actually (brilliantly) trolling that dude on ESPN. He seemed to be having fun and I know what a bait looks like. (I would also totally troll that show if I were in Mike's position.) In any case, it was definitely cool seeing ol' Iron Mike relaxing and enjoying some casual video games. But next time they should play a proper fighting game... instead of Mariokart.

Keep it here on Fighters Generation for more Street Fighter related news. (Sometimes we even cover Mike Tyson news.)   ~TFG Webmaster


 Sources:  ESPN eSportsKotakuEventhubsTechtudo       Related Tweet: @Fighters_Gen 

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