Photo: Lenny Ignelzi/AP/World Wide Photos
Soon after his release, Mike began fighting again. He now knows that was a mistake. "I shouldn't have fought," he says. "I was really not in no kind of condition emotionally, intellectually, physically to be fighting. I was just an angry ball of energy."
In June 1997, boxing fans tuned in to see Mike fight Evander Holyfield. It was one of the most anticipated comeback matches in the sport's history. Now, it's one of the most infamous.
At the end of the third round, millions watched in horror as Mike bit Holyfield twice, once in each ear. He was disqualified and condemned by the media.
Mike explains what caused him to snap that night. "I was angry that he was butting my head. He kept butting me and cutting my head," he says. "I was just enraged, and I wanted to inflict so much pain on him and stuff. I was just pissed off that he was such a great fighter too. ... I wanted to just beat him up."
Soon after the incident, Mike issued a public apology to Holyfield, but he now admits it wasn't sincere. Mike says he'd like the opportunity to apologize again. This time, he'll mean it.
"When I see him sometimes, he's a little leery of me," he says. "I can feel the vibe and energy is not good, but I always wanted to shake his hand and apologize. I've known him for such a long time, and it was undisciplined. I was in a very competitive mood, and I wanted desperately to beat him for my own self-aggrandizement."