Surviving Barstool | Ep. 3 Premieres Wednesday (11/29) at 8PM ETWATCH EP. 2 NOW

On This Date in Sports August 23, 1988: Mike Tyson's Street Fight

In collaboration with the

Mike Tyson finds himself in an impromptu fight as he brawls with Mitch “Blood” Green outside a famous clothing store in Harlem. Two years earlier at Madison Square Garden, the two men fought, with Tyson winning a unanimous decision but failing to knockdown Green.  With Iron Mike, now the undisputed champion, Green wanted a rematch. Both would be face misdemeanor charges as Tyson injured his hand, giving Green a swollen face.

In his unprecedented rise to become the youngest heavyweight champion at the age of 20 in 1986, Mike Tyson seemingly destroyed everyone who came into the ring. Turning professional in 1985, Mike Tyson, who was born on June 30, 1966, often fought twice a month to move up to the number one contender’s spot. Most opponents would fail to even past the first round against the sheer power of Tyson’s punch. In May of 1986, Tyson had a pair of fighters go the distance. The first was James Tillis, and the second was Mitch “Blood” Green.

Still a month from turning 20, Mike Tyson had his 21st professional fight in 14 months on May 20, 1986, against Mitch “Blood” Green in a ten-round fight at Madison Square Garden. Born January 13, 1957, Green had been around longer but had fought fewer fights, holding a record of 16-1-1 entering the match with the 20-0 Tyson. Knowing the punching power of Mike Tyson, Mitch Green looked to avoid the big punch and played defense all night, clutching and grabbing the teenaged contender. The result was a somewhat lackluster ten-round fight, with Mike Tyson winning a unanimous decision.

Following the fight with Green, Tyson continued his tear, winning four fights in under two rounds over the next two months. Before 1986 was over, he was the WBC heavyweight champion, beating Trevor Berbick in two rounds on November 22. Over the next year, Mike Tyson beat James “Bonecrusher” Smith for the WBA title and Tony Tucker for the IBF heavyweight crown to become the world's undisputed heavyweight champion. Facing Michael Spinks on June 27, 1988, Tyson delivered a stunning win, with a first-round knockout in a battle of unbeaten champions.

While Mike Tyson became the "baddest man on the planet" and the biggest star in boxing, Mitch Green stewed. Since his loss to Tyson, he had not been in the ring and had felt promoter Don King did not give him his full payday. Hearing that Mike Tyson was at Dapper Dan’s, a famous clothing store for some early morning shopping, Green went down to Harlem looking for a fight. Mitch “Blood” Green also wanted a rematch, which ended up happening on the street. The two men tussled as a crowd gathered to watch. Before the fight which started at 5 AM, was stopped, both boxers suffered slight injuries as Mike Tyson had a fractured hand, while Mitch “Blood” Green was left with a swollen and bloody face. Both men would face misdemeanor charges for simple assault and fighting.

After the fight, Mitch “Blood” Green took to the press to rip Mike Tyson, who had to push back a match against Frank Bruno from November to February because of the street brawl. Green would later win a civil suit against Tyson, but the two never got in the ring.