Laila Ali on undercard in father's hometown

Originally Published: July 25, 2004
Associated Press

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Mike Tyson arrived in Louisville on Sunday night and immediately predicted a victory in his bout with Danny Williams.

"Knockout," Tyson said.

Tyson, dressed in a yellow shirt with green trim, white shorts and white sneakers, brushed through the airport, answering a few questions from a band of reporters before departing in a limousine.

The 38-year-old former heavyweight champion and convicted rapist arrived via a private flight, pronounced himself in great shape and anxious to take on Williams on Friday night.

"I'm just ecstatic to be here," Tyson said. "I'm looking forward to doing my part and giving them a good show."

Williams (31-3, 26 KO) was scheduled to arrive on a commercial flight Sunday night.

Laila Ali, daughter of former heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali, also arrived in Louisville on Sunday. She is scheduled to fight on the undercard.

Friday's fight will be the first of a two-year, seven-match plan to help Tyson (50-4, 44 KO) get out of more than $25 million worth of debt and put him back on the road to becoming a contender again.

Trainer Freddie Roach believes Tyson can be a force in the heavyweight division again.

"The heavyweight division isn't deep right now," Roach said in a teleconference July 15.

Williams, a former British Commonwealth champion, estimated Tyson at about 40 percent of his peak ability and insisted that he is not going to be a fall guy.

Tyson and Williams will have separate public workouts Tuesday in downtown Louisville.

Weigh-ins will be held Thursday at the Kentucky Fair and Exposition Center, site of the fight.

Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press