Reprint that came packaged with the Marvel Legends (Mojo Series) Power Man Action Figure.
"Out of Harlem--A Hero!"
Carl Lucas is a loser, raised on the dog-eat-dog streets of Harlem, and it was only a matter of time before he found himself in jail. The irony is that he was put here by his best childhood friend, Willis Stryker, from jealosy at taking his woman, Reva. That rivalry results in Reva's death and Carl being framed.
Now in prison, everybody attempts to make Lucas their pawn, including Captain Rackham of the guards and the convict power broker, Shades. Lucas' indomitable spirit frustrates them all. Enter reform Warden Stuart and Doctor Noah Burstein. The Doc has interests other than keeping the prison populace patched up, namely a super-soldier formula, and he thinks Lucas is the perfect candidate.
Rackham attempts to get his revenge during the experiment, overloading the equipment. The result is that Lucas develops skin like steel and incredible strength. In the ensuing confusion, Lucas escapes, and is pursued by guards. In a hail of gunfire, he plunges from a cliff and doesn't re-emerge.
The guards are convinced of his death, but Lucas makes it to New York, and sets himself up with a new identity as a detective/mercenary super-hero, Luke Cage, Hero for Hire.