By James Slater
Former two-time heavyweight ruler Tim Witherspoon has some story to tell – in and out of the ring – and the 55-year-old is about to get his side of the story across for the very first time via what promises to be an explosive biography due out later this year.
Currently juggling with prospective titles for the book that has been co-written with Ryan Danes and Kevin Baker, Witherspoon promises a “crazy” read.
“It should be out late this year or maybe early next year,” “Terrible” Tim said exclusively to Fightnews.com.
“It’s my life story, my family, my upbringing, my boxing career, my times with Don King – everything. This is the first time I’ve been able to tell my side of the story and it’s been long overdue. It’s taken so long, partly because some of the people involved are serious people, and some of them are still alive. I had to wait, so that nobody would get hurt by what’s in the book. During my boxing career, which really began in 1976, a long time ago, I had to deal with some serious people. I was told to my face a number of times, ‘you’re gonna fight or else!’
“Now I’m putting my story out without hurting these individuals. Boxing has changed as a sport. During what they called ‘The lost generation of heavyweights,’ with guys like myself, Mitch Green, Tony Tubbs, David Bey and other guys (some of whom will speak in the book), there was only me who was willing to stand up and talk against what we were going through; about how we were being mistreated. It was due to what we went through that guys like Bernard Hopkins and Floyd Mayweather had a chance to flourish. Today, it’s harder for a fighter to get ripped off.”
Witherspoon, who had 69 pro bouts and won the WBC and then the WBA heavyweight title, says the book will be full of amazing photos.
“There will be a whole lot of photos on the book, photos that will make you go, ‘wow!’ A movie would be a good idea too, because it was a crazy time. We had to have guns in the house, with me and other people taking turns as lookouts, because I had been threatened, that my kids would be kidnapped; that I might be attacked. It’s a crazy story and it should have been told a long time ago.
“If it wasn’t for Tom Moran, my former manager, the whole Don King lawsuit would never have happened. So thanks go out to him. It will be a boxing book – telling the story of my days with Ali and on my key fights – but it will be one with so much more to tell!”
Whether or not Tim settles on “Terrible Times” (his current favourite choice of title) or “King And All His Men,” the former champ’s bio sounds like a winner.