Mike Tyson declared Rob Ford the "best mayor in Toronto history" on Tuesday at an unexpected meeting at city hall.
The mayor and former boxing champion spoke to reporters, after a brief closed-door meeting, about their shared experience with scandal, personal problems and the media. "We're cut from the same cloth," said Ford.
Tyson said Ford's problems are no different from anyone else's, except that he is in the media's spotlight.
"He has a troubled past because he has 24-hour surveillance of the press," said Tyson of Ford. "Do you prefer him to be a guy who's clean-cut but behind the doors you never know what he's doing?"
Tyson said he prefers to know what the mayor's problems are, rather than have those problems hidden from the public eye.
He ended the brief scrum by announcing that Ford is "the best mayor in Toronto history."
Ford earlier said he "idolized" and "respected" Tyson.
Tyson is in town for his one-man show, Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth, at the Air Canada Centre, and phoned the mayor for a meeting.
Tyson was arrested in 1991 on rape charges in Indiana. He was found guilty in 1992 and served three years in prison.
"I'm not going to comment on his personal life," said Ford, earlier in the day, when asked about meeting the ex-convict. "I've never met the man. I'm interested in what he has to say."
Tyson is considered one of the greatest heavyweight boxers to ever get in the ring.
He famously bit off part of Evander Holyfield's ear in a 1997 bout.
Since Tyson's retirement from professional boxing, the New York native has appeared in films like The Hangover and embarked on his live tour.
Ford has met with with many celebrities and sports stars, including other former professional boxers such as Canadians George Chuvalo and Charles (Spider) Jones, who have both endorsed him in past.