Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr are banned from knocking each other out during this weekend’s highly-anticipated exhibition clash. The two boxing icons are set to trade leather for charity in Los Angeles on Saturday night but both will have to adjust to a new set of rules inside the ring.
Given that both fighters are over the age of 50, the California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) have decided to put some new regulations in place to protect the health and safety of the fighters.
The contest will last just 16 minutes, made up of eight two-minute rounds.
Both Tyson and Jones Jr decided against wearing head guards and will therefore don 12-ounce gloves as damage limitation.
Andy Foster, the CSAC’s executive director, has made it clear they will call proceedings to a halt if either fighter is cut.
He has also declared there will be no knockouts allowed and no official winner either.
Foster told Boxing Scene earlier this year: “They can exhibit their boxing skills, but I don’t want them using their best efforts to hurt each other.
“They’re going to spar hard, but they shouldn’t be going for a knockout. This isn’t a record-book type of fight.
“This is not world-championship boxing right now. It’s not what this is. People shouldn’t be getting knocked out.”
There will be no judges ringside however, the WBC (World Boxing Council) have organised for three former fighters, Chad Dawson, Christy Martin and Vinny Pazienza to be ringside.
They will then score the contest and the Frontline Battle Belt will then be handed to their pick.
UFC president Dana White was left bemused when he was informed that the pair could not knock each other out.
He said: “They’re not allowed to knock each other out? How do you enforce that? I’d like to bet that doesn’t happen. Can you bet on that?”
White was then told no bets will be taken on the contest, he added: “You can’t even bet on this fight? I did not know that. I don’t even know what to say to that.”
Both fighters have laid on record their frustration at the enforcement of two-minute rounds.
Tyson said: “I’m sure they have their reasons for doing it.
“But you know, women fight for two minutes. But I guess the commission has a bigger influence than I do. I’m just happy that we’re doing it.”
His opponent and former four-weight world champion Jones, was in agreement: “I’m not happy at all. That’s for women.
“Why are we doing two-minute rounds? We’re two of the best to ever do it. Two minutes doesn’t do anything for me or him.”