Although he has no plans to speak on the campaign trail, Tyson’s empathy with Trump could bring a request for his powerful presence to help discourage protesters, hundreds of whom forced the abandonment of a rally in Chicago.
Recalling the years in which he himselfwas vilified, Tyson told the New York Post: ‘Now he knows what it’s like when everybody is out to get you. All those people who used to sit down with him are now saying they’ve got to get rid of him at all costs.
‘It’s crazy that people who tried so hard get rid of (Barack) Obama now hate Trump more than him. It’s pretty awesome that (despite all that) Trump’s doing so well.’
In earlier statements explaining his decision to endorse a presidential candidate for the first time, Tyson has said: ‘Me and Trump are really good friends. We are also the same guy. A thrust for power.
‘We need power in whatever field we are in. That’s who we are, balls of energy. We’re fire.’
The pair became close when Trump promoted Tyson fights at his Atlantic City casinos in the 80s. He also questioned Tyson’s rape conviction and opposed his prison sentence.
Now Tyson, who converted to Islam while in jail, is backing Trump even though the multi-billionaire businessman is calling for a temporary ban on Muslims entering America as an anti-terrorist measure.
Tyson says: ‘That’s not gonna happen but it doesn’t mean he can’t be president.’
Two other US boxing celebrities, despite being sworn enemies of each other, have spoken out against Trump.
Rival promoters Oscar De La Hoya and Bob Arum are critical of Trump’s stance on Muslims and his plan to build a wall running the length of America’s southern border to staunch the flow of Mexican immigrants.
But the latest opinion polls, which give Trump a strong lead nationally over Senators Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, suggest Tyson is in the more popular corner.
Meanwhile further evidence of Iron Mike’s financial recovery, following his lavish squandering of the $300 million, or more, he earned during his ring career, comes with his upgrade from a $1.5 million mansion In Las Vegas to a $2.5 million palazzo nearby.