QUOTE(BrutalBodyShots @ Sep 21 2007, 09:53 AM) [snapback]358249[/snapback]
Despite being the highest grossing PPV of all time, I don't think the Tyson fight would do better than eeking its way into the top 10 of Lewis' fights in terms of significance. I don't know ANYONE other than PURE hardcore Tyson "living in the 80's" fans that actually thought Tyson had a chance in there with Lewis.
It's true that hardcore fans knew how little significance this fight actually held, but slaughtering Tyson gained Lennox acceptance as the world's best heavyweight from mainstream fans as well, who had steadfastly denied him that title for years. In that sense, the fight with Mike was the final chapter of his great career, as Al B stated. Without it, there'd still be a cloud hanging over LL's career with a lot of people, however ridiculously unfairly.
I think Lennox turned down the rematch because he realized he just didn't have the desire anymore to get himself in the kind of top shape necessary to wipe the canvas with Vitali the way he should have, and certainly would have in his prime.
Count me among those who didn't feel a remach was necessary anyway, at least not at that late stage of his career. It was a legitimate TKO. And for all the talk of LL's shaky chin, Vitali cracked him there several times right on the button and it wasn't enough to take him out. Despite his gaudy KO numbers, he didn't have the one punch power of McCall or Rahman.