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By Ayaan Paul
Synonymous with boxing greatness and a newfound love for cannabis, Mike Tyson is embarking on a groundbreaking venture that seamlessly combines sports and cannabis culture. This distinct championship signifies the intersection of two seemingly unrelated domains – cannabis consumption and the sport of boxing. The event made its debut on August 27 on Koh Samui, Thailand's second-largest island.
Picture this: contenders stepping into the ring with a twist even more unexpected than a sudden uppercut. Before the punches fly, fighters are required to embrace a new kind of warm-up routine – "smoking a bong or a joint." Yep, you read that right. In a move that defies sporting conventions, these brave souls are set to engage in three rounds of fistic fury, each lasting three minutes, but not before they've embraced the mellowing effects of cannabis.
The event's format involves three rounds, each spanning three minutes, with a cool twist – fighters are mandated to indulge in cannabis consumption before their matches commence.
Mike Tyson Launches Weed Boxing Event in Thailand “Weed Boxing Championship” in Thailand’s second largest island ‘Koh Samui’ in which participants will be required to smoke a bong or a joint before participating as well as boxer.#กัญชา #cannabis #samui #สมุย pic.twitter.com/8dflMiaYaJ — Channel Weed Thailand (@ChannelWeedTH) August 24, 2023
Beyond the unique sporting spectacle, attendees at the championship event will be invited to immerse themselves fully in the cannabis-infused atmosphere. Spectators will have the opportunity to share in the same cannabis varieties that the fighters are consuming.
The convergence of live entertainment, delectable cuisine, and the distinctiveness of the event itself will render the Weed Boxing Championship a multi-sensory extravaganza.
The chosen venue, the Samui International Muay Thai Stadium, is poised to accommodate a sizable audience, poised to make an unforgettable experience for all present.
What sets the Weed Boxing Championship apart is that fighters needn't fret about the scrutiny of anti-doping agencies like WADA or USADA.
The unconventional pre-fight cannabis ritual defies conventional sporting norms, providing an alternative experience that aligns more closely with Tyson's own journey of exploration and reinvention.
As for the man behind the merriment, Tyson won't be trading gloves for a green session. Instead, he's expected to be a ringside ambassador of the cannabis cause, maybe even partaking in the puffing parade with some of the contenders. Tyson's candid take on cannabis as a workout enhancer and performance booster adds a punchline to his already larger-than-life persona.
Tyson's personal journey with cannabis has been transformative, as he's previously highlighted its positive impact on his workout routine and performance. Reflecting on his boxing career, Tyson mused that integrating cannabis might have resulted in a less aggressive approach in the ring.
“Cannabis is good to workout on for me. I just wish I was smoking back when I was fighting - I really lost out there from an athlete’s perspective. If I’d smoked during my boxing career, I probably wouldn’t have been so aggressive.”
- Mike Tyson in an interview with Muscle and Health magazine
The event's timing coincides with a significant shift in Thailand's legal landscape. In June 2022, the country decriminalized cannabis, leading to the rapid proliferation of dispensaries and various cannabis-related events.
This emerging trend, often referred to as the "Green Rush," reflects the growing acceptance and demand for high-quality cannabis products within the nation. But this event isn't just about the herb; it's about marrying martial arts and marijuana in a match made in entertainment heaven.
While Thailand's Muay Thai tourism has long been a magnet for enthusiasts, marijuana tourism is an emerging phenomenon, and the Weed Boxing Championship aims to bridge these two worlds. By fusing elements of both, this pioneering event not only marks a historical moment but also opens the door to the potential growth of this unique niche in the country's tourism landscape.
With Mike Tyson's imprint on the event and his success as a ‘cannapreneur’ through Tyson 2.0, this event could very well be the beginning of a new era, where sports, cannabis, and entertainment meet, greet, and pack a punch – or a puff.