A calm, cool and collected Mike Tyson spoke to reporters and hundreds of fans last week from a New Jersey cannabis dispensary, where he called out the next opponent he’s looking to knock out: Opiates.
Tyson has been open about his own battle with alcohol and drugs in the past that saw him in various rehab stints. However, he seems to be doing much better. He’s no longer that stereotypical, wild man that we saw both in and outside of the ring — he’s now much more subdued and in a much better place.
He thanks cannabis for that.
Tyson has been making the rounds about how cannabis and marijuana have helped him become a calmer person and the benefits that it has brought him. Speaking with the New York Post, he says that “cannabis and other plant medicine have helped me get to this point where I am who I want to be.”
He wants to bring that motivation to those that may be suffering from opiate addiction.
Earlier this week, the “Baddest Man on the Planet” teamed up with former WWE superstar Ric Flair in a now viral video of both of them blazing together on the street:
THE OPIOID CRISIS IN SPORTS
Mike Tyson knows all too well about the problems that opiates have created in sports. One of his best friends — fellow boxer Arturo Gatti — had an addiction that would eventually lead to him taking his own life in 2009 at the age of 37.
The problem is unfortunately only getting worse. According to the National Library of Medicine, “Opioid use among professional athletes at any given time, as reported in 2 different studies, ranged from 4.4% to 4.7%, while opioid use over a National Football League career was 52%. High school athletes had lifetime opioid use rates of 28% to 46%.”
The former heavyweight champion wants to change that dependency not only for fellow boxers and athletes, but everyone. He hopes to use his own personal experiences and benefits from using cannabis to help ease people off of hard drugs.
Tyson is looking to expand his edible cannabis brand into Delta 8 and CBD forms as more states vote to legally permit it.
He last appeared in the boxing ring last year when he faced Roy Jones Jr. in an 8 round exhibition match that resulted in a split draw.