The Chicago Syndicate: John Gotti Once Ordered a Mob Hit on Don King, According to Sammy "The Bull" Gravano

Thursday, October 31, 2019

John Gotti Once Ordered a Mob Hit on Don King, According to Sammy "The Bull" Gravano

It’s pretty much common knowledge that the mob and boxing had a long standing connection. And, although gangsters are no longer known to dominate the fight game, names like Owney Madden and Frankie Carbo will always stand out for having tarnished the sport’s reputation. Now another famous gangster, or former gangster, has come out with some rather revealing stories and opinions regarding the sweet science and organized crime.

Sammy “The Bull”Gravano was about as big a mobster as one could find. Connected to nineteen murders, he stood as underboss of the powerful Gambino crime family up until he early 90s, when he decided to testify against his boss, notorious mobster John Gotti.

Now in his 70s, Gravano is out of jail and going public in a big way. He recently was the subject of a terrific, if not disturbing,interview with Patrick Bet-David, where he talked about Gotti actually putting a hit out on famed promoter Don King. As Gravano tells it, he had a fighter who he wanted to have face Mike Tyson during Tyson’s prime. “He was a tough fighter,” Gravano says of the possible opponent in the interview, “and he was a little bit over the hill.”

Someone Gravrano refers to as “a street guy” was sent to King, who was promoting Tyson at the time, in order to generate interest. To his credit, the controversial King, who had done time in prison himself, didn’t want to get involved with the Gambinos. “I’m not doing any of that bullshit,”Gravano quotes King as saying. Taking the news of King’s refusal back to family boss Gotti, Gravano was given a pat order. The “street guy” was “to go back,make another appointment (with King), and kill him.” Gravano expressed surprise, but Gotti claimed the “street guy” should return to King and “hit him with a proposal” that would essentially stand as an offer King couldn’t refuse.“If he says no,” Gravano quotes Gotti as saying, “take a gun out and shoot him.”

Fortunately for King and the world of boxing, the hit never went down. Gravano claimed the “street guy” got cold feet and disappeared. Left without a hit man, Gravano had no interest in pursuing a matter he wasn’t crazy about to begin with. “I’m definitely not going after him,” Gravano reflects with a laugh, “because this is insane now. We’re hitting a guy because he doesn’t want to do a deal? We’ll be hitting guys every other week.”

Yet Don King isn’t the only figure Gravano talks about inthe interview. “Teddy Atlas is an asshole,” the former hit man says to Bet-David. Gravano, who liked to box, was once questioned by Atlas: “Are you afraid?” Gravano said no. “He took it,” Gravano goes on to say, “to a different level, meaning that’s cowardice.” While admitting Atlas is “a tremendous trainer,” Gravano also presents a personal challenge on camera.

“Teddy,” he says, “come down and put the fucking gloves on with me, I’ll show you how scared I am of you. And you’re a fucking bitch.”

It ain’t Shakespeare – but it gets the point across.

Thanks to Sean Crose.

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