NEW YORK, FEB. 13 -- James "Buster" Douglas today became the undisputed heavyweight boxing champion of the world by acclamation, three days after his 10th-round knockout of Mike Tyson Sunday in Tokyo in one of the greatest upsets in fight history.

The World Boxing Council and the World Boxing Association, two of the sport's three chief sanctioning bodies, finally recognized Douglas's stunning victory as official today. Also, Tyson and promoter Don King withdrew their controversial protests that Douglas was the beneficiary of a "long count" by referee Octavio Meyran after he was knocked down in the eighth round, and talks moved ahead on a Tyson-Douglas rematch.

Douglas, the unheralded 29-year-old from Columbus, Ohio, already had been declared champion by the International Boxing Federation, the only sanctioning body that promptly had declared him the victor. Joining the WBC, WBA and IBF in recognizing Douglas was Tyson, who denied he had sought to overturn the result with his protest.

"When I was the champion I never made excuses," Tyson, 23, said at a news conference here today. "I lost. A loss is a loss. I wouldn't want a title or a changed decision. You win it in the ring and lose it in the ring. All I want is a rematch."

In Columbus, Douglas said the main issue for him "is that I am now looked upon as the heavyweight champion of the world. It was a lifelong dream come true, and I thank God for that."

Just as Douglas assumed his titles, arrangements for a rematch heated up, with King confirming that he is in negotiations with the Douglas camp. Tyson and Douglas could meet in Atlantic City on June 18, replacing an originally scheduled bout between Tyson and mandatory challenger Evander Holyfield, the No. 1 contender.

King denied statements by representatives of billionaire developer Donald Trump that the fight is set for one of his hotels in Atlantic City. First Douglas must agree to fight, Holyfield must step aside and the governing bodies must sanction it.

In Atlanta, Holyfield's manager, Ken Sanders, said his boxer probably would allow the rematch. "We've been approached to make a deal, by Don King, to step aside and make way for the rematch," Sanders told the Associated Press. "We're waiting for the contract from him. If it's what they said it would be, we probably would do it."

Sanders said Holyfield will accept "seven figures" to appear on the undercard of Tyson-Douglas II.

Recognition of Douglas's achievement, interrupting previously unbeaten Tyson's 37 straight victories by first bruising his eye and then knocking him out in the 10th round, was slow in coming. It also should quiet the public outcry that arose when the WBA and WBC declared there was "no champion" and suspended the result for review because of the King-Tyson protests.

WBC President Jose Sulaiman and referee Meyran accompanied King and Tyson to a postfight news conference in Tokyo, presenting to some boxing observers a bizarre appearance since no one was representing Douglas.

The group contended Meyran mistakenly allowed Douglas two or three extra seconds to rise from the floor of the ring when Tyson knocked him down in the eighth round. Douglas and his manager, John Johnson, were enraged by the controversy, particularly because King as promoter theoretically is supposed to be neutral.

The WBC rendered its decision early today from Mexico City after Sulaiman consulted with the five members of its executive committee, who all agreed. The WBC announced in a statement "the unanimous and immediate decision to officially recognize Buster Douglas as world champion following his victory over ex-world champion Mike Tyson. The WBC expresses that there exists no possibility to change the decision on this fight."

Reuter reported that Duane Ford, the WBC's international secretary, characterized Sulaiman's decision to suspend Douglas's victory as a "bad judgment."

"I am proud he has recognized he made a bad judgment . . . and has rectified it," Ford said. "I spent up to 1:30 on the phone with Jose Sulaiman this morning {Tuesday}. He said he was extremely humble and somewhat of a broken man."

"I felt embarrassed to Buster Douglas," Sulaiman told the AP from Las Vegas. "I felt it was not fair to the kid that I had withheld my opinion about the result of the fight."

Jimmy Binns, the attorney for the WBA in the United States, announced that organization's decision from his office in Philadelphia. Binns said he held extensive discussions with WBA President Gilberto Mendoza of Venezuela by phone from Japan, and their review of the eighth-round incident also showed Douglas was the rightful champion.

Videotape of the fight revealed Meyran picked up his count three to four seconds behind the ringside timekeeper. Douglas maintained that he responded only to Meyran's count, and could have risen sooner. He has said he rose after six seconds and was prepared to resume after eight seconds, fully coherent.

King defended himself against charges of meddling and partisanship, saying neither he nor Tyson ever asked that the result be altered.

"I never asked anybody to change the decision," King said. "We just want a first shot at a rematch."

Said Tyson: "I never considered myself a poor loser. I just gave my opinion of the incident. Titles are made to be won and lost."

Today Tyson continued to wear the sunglasses that hide his bruised eye. "I have a slight abrasion that is not very glamorous," he said.

His argument for a rematch was virtually a plea.

"I won fights because I was the best fighter in the world," he said. "I still believe I am the best fighter in the world. Just give me another chance."