SAVAGED BY THE BELL

A TV MOVIE PORTRAYS MIKE TYSON AS BOTH PAWN AND KING

It is a cherished tenet of sports mythology that the champion possesses kinetic genius matched-perhaps even exceeded-by an untrammeled yearning to win. The most captivating figures in our pantheon are those who fulfill their athletic promise through their passion.

But then there is an anomaly named Mike Tyson. A TV movie about the wayward boxer's life, which airs this month on hbo, deftly portrays the former world heavyweight champion as a ruined young man devoid of the sportsman's archetypal inner drive. Witness an Iron Mike without an iron will.

Born in a Brooklyn ghetto, Tyson was arrested dozens of times as...

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