Mike Tyson might bite again.
The former heavyweight champion says if a referee fails to protect him in his next bout he would be forced to take matters into his own mouth.
"I would do it again under those circumstances," he said in Sunday's Los Angeles Times.
Tyson bit off part of Evander Holyfield's ear in a 1997 title fight. He contends referee Mills Lane allowed him to be butted, and he would react the same way if cut and bleeding.
"I know what the reality is," he said. "Listen, I hate to cry and I hate to sound like sour grapes, but no one ever listens to me. No one ever hears what I have to say."
Tyson, coming off a Maryland jail sentence, fights Orlin Norris Oct. 23 in Las Vegas and doesn't expect help from the referee.
"If he's having a rough fight and there is some foulness going on, the referee is going to be paralyzed and not act," he told the Times.
"Nobody ever has any sympathy or pity for me. In retaliation, I'll fight back because nobody is fighting for me. I have to defend myself. It is just human nature to defend yourself. I just never sold out."
In the Holyfield bout, Tyson spit out his mouthpiece and bit off the top of his opponent's right ear. Minutes later, he bit Holyfield's left ear.
He lost his boxing license for 15 months and apologized for his conduct. He returned to the ring in January, knocking out Francois Botha in the fifth round.
©1999 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed
© 1999 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.