Sports Briefs

Posted: Thursday, February 20, 2003

Tyson shows off tattoo, not much else

TUNICA, Miss. -- Mike Tyson was more eager to show off the new tattoo on his face than to show off what kind of shape he's in. The tattoo looked real enough, but Clifford Etienne's camp wasn't so sure about anything else.

The circuslike atmosphere surrounding Tyson moved Wednesday to the string of casinos along the Mississippi River, where the former heavyweight champion worked out behind closed doors before emerging to give the world a peek at his new tattoo. His trainer said later that Tyson was discouraged about his return to training after a week out of the gym.

A day after Tyson woke up and decided to fight, it was Etienne's turn to wake up and change his mind about getting into the ring. Etienne decided nearly $1 million was too much to pass up. Etienne's manager, Les Bonano, said he doubted Tyson was ever sick and said he believed the former heavyweight champion had been working out all along. The claims of illness, he said, may have been just a ploy to make Etienne let his guard down.

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