Mike Tyson, AEW, Chris Jericho

Mike Tyson and Chris Jericho

Mike Tyson, Henry Cejudo, Rashad Evans and Vitor Belfort make AEW cameo

There have been plenty of rumors swirling lately about a potential comeback for legendary boxer Mike Tyson. And while the 53-year-old knock-out artist has yet to return to the boxing ring or make a debut in another combat sport such as MMA or bare-knuckle boxing, he has made another pro wrestling appearance, along with MMA standouts Henry Cejudo, Rashad Evans, and Vitor Belfort.

Tyson presented a new championship title at All Elite Wrestling’s “Double or Nothing” pay-per-view on Saturday and he was back performing for the pro wrestling promotion Wednesday night on AEW’s “Dynamite.” The former boxing heavyweight champion of the world was accompanied to the ring with a posse of allies as he confronted AEW poster boy Chris Jericho and a group of AEW heels. Among those by his side were recently retired UFC bantamweight champion Henry Cejudo, former UFC light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans, and MMA veteran Vitor Belfort.

It didn’t take long for chaos to ensue once Mike Tyson and his band of MMA fighters entered the ring.

Tyson and Jericho are no strangers in the pro wrestling ring. The two were actually teammates in a 2010 episode of WWE’s “Monday Night Raw” in which they matched up against the D-Generation X of Triple H and Shawn Michaels. During that match, Tyson betrayed Jericho and punched him in the face, joining forces with DX in the process.

That feud has now spilled over into AEW 10 years later.

After Tyson did a Hulk Hogan impression by ripping his shirt off and flexing as Jericho was trying to speak to him, a series of shoves took place and the night’s show ended with a brawl.

A few weeks ago, a video of Tyson hitting mitts went viral as many were stunned to see the type of shape the 53-year-old is in and how much power he still possesses after retiring from boxing in 2005. Tyson even said at the end of the video that he was “back,” which led to even more speculation about a possible return to competition. However, the video was part of an advertisement for an energy drink, so a return to boxing or a debut in MMA could have been blown out of proportion.

But when it comes to pro wrestling, Tyson has a long history with that form of entertainment. He has gone on record saying that he grew up a big fan of late WWF champion Bruno Sammartino and, in 1998, Tyson was involved in the promotion’s “Attitude Era” after a storyline pegged him as a special outside enforcer at “WrestleMania XIV” as part of an angle that also involved “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. Mike Tyson was also inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2012.

The appearance of the MMA fighters at the recent AEW event is perhaps even more surprising and intriguing. Evans is retired and could step into the ring at any time if he pleases. Belfort is at the tail end of his career and is currently fighting at middleweight for ONE Championship, however, a pro wrestling career could potentially be more lucrative.

But Belfort is 43 and Evans is 40. The real story here is Cejudo, who is just 33 years old and recently retired from MMA abruptly, at the top of the heap in the bantamweight division. “Triple C” is one of just four fighters ever to hold multiple UFC titles at one time and he would certainly be a big pro wrestling draw regardless of which promotion he were to sign with.

WWE is still the crown jewel of pro wrestling, but AEW has made a quick ascent up the ranks. AEW is a relatively new promotion and it is owned by Shad Khan, owner of the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars franchise, and his son, Tony. With Tyson now seemingly aligned with AEW, Cejudo could capitalize on some extra eyeballs on the promotion in the short term.

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