Thursday, June 10, 2010

When Boxing Becomes a Jewish Sport - Yuri Foreman vs. Miguel Cotto

At one time, boxing was a Jewish sport. From 1910-1940 there were 26 Jewish world champions, and by 1928 Jews were the dominant ethnic group in the sport. One hardly recognizes these facts from the makeup of today's boxing cards. But a new generation of Jew, Orthodox and in rabbinical school, no less, has emerged to remind the world of the great Jewish pugilists of the past.

Last Saturday night in Yankee Stadium, Yuri Foreman, the Jewish rabbinical student champion, fought challenger Miguel Cotto for the WBA super welterweight championship title. In the middle of round 7, Foreman slipped and injured an already weakened knee. In pain and hobbled he continued on, looking for no excuse to quit. Again he slipped and wrenched his knee one more time. Instead of calling it quits he went toe to toe with the challenger until a body blow in the 9th round knocked him to the mat and the referee called a TKO. In the midst of the mayhem an unknown party "threw in the towel", bringing the fight to a mistaken halt until the referee restarted it again.

Do not be misled by the sports writers who proclaimed this a rout and said that Foreman was "clobbered". Foreman put up one of the greatest displays of sheer guts boxing the ring has ever seen.

Watch it here, starting in the 6th round when things start to get dicey for Foreman.

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