Holyfield vs Tyson gloves bring 135% increase on estimate
The 'bite fight' gloves that Evander Holyfield wore against Mike Tyson sold amid controversy
The Property from the Life and Career of Evander Holyfield auction has been highlighted by a pair of gloves that the heavyweight wore in his "bite fight" against Mike Tyson.
The auction, which was held on November 30 in Beverly Hills, saw the gloves bring a 134.6% increase on the $15,000 high estimate, selling for $35,200.
The heavyweight championship fight between Holyfield and Tyson took place in June, 1997 in Las Vegas. Their second meeting, Holyfield had dominated in their first match, securing a knockout win in the 11th round.
The angered Tyson had complained about head-butting throughout the first fight and, entering the third round, removed his mouth guard to bite Holyfield's ear. Taking a one-inch piece of cartilage and spitting it onto the ring floor, Tyson was immediately disqualified and Holyfield took the title.
Also selling well was Holyfield's 1988 WBC cruiserweight world champion belt, which he won in Las Vegas against Carlos de Leon. In winning the belt, along with the WBA and IBF cruiserweight belts earlier in his career, Holyfield became the only undefeated and undisputed cruiserweight champion in boxing history. It sold for $28,125, making an 87.5% increase on its $15,000 high estimate.
Theresults of the salewere undermined by Holyfield's decision to remove some of the most important items at the last minute, including his bronze medal from the 1984 Olympics. The auction house's Darren Julien told World Boxing News: "Evander destroyed his own auction. It did just under $1m, but had he supported it and not pulled the key items it would have done $3m - $5m. Bidders were very upset that he pulled the key items. He's his own worst enemy."
Also selling over the weekend were two pairs of Muhammad Ali gloves, which set a joint auction record for boxing memorabilia of any kind. We are currently offering a fantastic signed drawing of Ali,as well as a vintage signed photograph of James J Jefferies, aka The Boilermaker.