A few hours later, in a chandeliered ballroom of the Las Vegas Hilton, as six trumpeters in Elizabethan blue velvet costumes of feathered caps, knickers, and sequined tunics sounded their instruments, the ring announcer, Chuck Hull, stepped forward.
Now outfitted in a Beefeater getup, right down to the knee socks, he intoned: "Hear ye! Hear ye! By order of the people of the world of boxing, in this glorious year of nineteen hundred and eighty-seven, it is hereby proclaimed that in lands near and far, one man above all others shall stand triumphant in the four-corner-square ring of battle, hereby trumpeted as the ultimate world heavyweight champion."
So began a Don King-designed "coronation" ceremony. The "thronization," as he called it, had pizzazz and more than a bit of gall. It was Florenz Ziegfeld meets Crazy Eddie.
Several of the major players in the Home Box Office heavyweight unification series were trumpeted down a red-carpeted pathway to the stage, introduced as Sir this and Sir that; Tyson sat in street clothes on an elevated red velvet throne. There were songs from the Little Angels, a children's choir out