It’s been 22 years since Tupac Shakur was shot down in cold blood on the streets of Las Vegas, but remembering the night they took his friend still reduces ‘Iron’ Mike Tyson to tears.
During a recent interview with Big Boy’s Neighborhood on YouTube, the former heavyweight boxer was visibly struggling to hold it together when discussing his friendship with the late rapper.
While dabbing away tears, Tyson explained in his unmistakable voice how he met up with Tupac after the fight and how the hip-hop star appeared very happy and full of life.
“He was very happy after the fight. He came to a press conference with me. We was just talking a bunch of s–t. I went home and then he left.”
On the night of September 13 1996 Tupac Shakur was shot four times by unknown assailants. At the time he was a passenger in a car Suge Knight was driving.
Both men had just witnessed Tyson’s first-round technical knockout of Bruce Sheldon at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Shakur died from his gunshot wounds hospital a week later on September 13, 1996. He was just 25.
Tyson was aware of the shooting soon after it happened. He was at home sleeping when he took the call.
Immediately he wanted to see his friend in hospital but revealed, “They wouldn’t let me see him.”
Tyson confessed that what saddens him most about the rap legend’s death is that he worked so hard to get where he was but his true potential was never fulfilled because he was cut down in his prime.
“Man, it’s very difficult to talk about. Just a young kid that wanted to be great and then that happened.”
Yet Tyson said he takes comfort in the fact that his late friend’s legacy lives on, and to this day is always asked questions about Tupac no matter where he goes.
Earlier this week Tyson had a few words of advice for another rapper, albeit one not cut from the same cloth as Tupac.
The Mirror reports that the champ advised Kanye West to “just take your f***ing medicine.”
Tyson who was diagnosed as bipolar 15 years ago opened up about his battles with depression on Los Angeles-based radio station Real 92.3.
Tyson admitted, “Well I knew some stuff was wrong when I had my temper tantrums for no particular reason
Turning his thought to West, who said his bipolar diagnosis “made him a superhero,” Tyson said, “I don’t know what Kanye is, but I know he’s a really interesting character, that he’s really brave to go up there and say all that craziness. It’s Kanye and Kanye needs to be heard.
“Oh, we can talk about it a lot, but you know, the real solution to the problem is just take your f***ing medicine.”
In the same interview Tyson confessed to being on “big time” meds and admitted, “I wouldn’t be here if I was off my meds. No way.”