In a recently aired commercial for Foot Locker, Mike Tyson apologizes to Evander Holyfield and hands him back the piece of his ear that he bit off.
“Maybe they can have Part 2,” Holyfield joked.
Long before a part of Alex Guerrero’s ear was bitten off by triple-A teammate Miguel Olivo, Holyfield was the victim of a similar bite from Tyson in their infamous 1997 heavyweight championship boxing match.
Speaking by phone from his hometown of Altanta, the 51-year-old Holyfield sent the Dodgers infielder his best wishes.
“Hopefully, he can get over it,” Holyfield said.
Holyfield said he was unaware of what had happened to Guerrero until Thursday.
“I just heard,” Holyfield said. “That’s kind of sad. I’m surprised that happened in baseball.”
Holyfield was sympathetic.
“All your nerves are in your ears,” he said. “It’s kind of shocking when you get bit in the ear. It ain’t a good thing. Getting bit just ain’t right.”
Holyfield lost a considerably smaller piece of his ear than Guerrero did. He said he received two stitches and was able to resume training almost immediately.
“I was ready right after,” said Holyfield, who is still missing a piece of his ear.
Guerrero had most of the upper part of his ear bitten off. The piece had to be reattached through plastic surgery.
“Oh, shoot,” Holyfield said. “That’s a little more difficult. It’s a slight difference.”
Less than five months after Holyfield was disfigured by Tyson, he unified the heavyweight championship by stopping Michael Moorer in eight rounds.
“I dealt with it,” Holyfield said. “When your mind is in the right place, things both good and bad become old.”
When Guerrero reaches the major leagues, he will probably receive significant media attention. That could also be an obstacle.
“Anything that can be an embarrassment, it’s a part of fear,” Holyfield said. “It’s difficult to move on.”
Holyfield said he used his sense of humor to deal with the additional exposure.
“The key is being able to laugh about stuff,” he said.Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times