Dimitriy Salita was recently profiled by the Jewish Daily Forward and made the Forward 50 list. The Forward 50 is a list of the fifty most influential Jewish-Americans.
Between 1910 and 1940, one third of all boxers in America were Jewish, including such champions as Benny Leonard, Max Baer and Barney Ross. But following World War II, the concept of Jewish boxing came to seem more and more like a contradiction in terms. Now, however, things have come full circle with the recent rise of Jewish boxers from the former Soviet Union — especially Dmitriy Salita, 27, born in Ukraine, and Yuri Foreman, born in Belarus. Salita, who moved to Brooklyn at age 9 and now fights under the American flag, is a practicing Orthodox Jew who refuses to fight on the Sabbath and Jewish holidays. He has amassed a record of 30-0-1. In the tradition of the American-Jewish boxers of the early 20th century, Salita fights with a Star of David on his shorts and is even known as the “Star of David” himself. Although both fighters have downplayed the religious tensions, Salita’s identity will take on special significance in December, when he faces World Boxing Association Light Welterweight Champion Amir Khan, a Muslim, in a title match that will be held in Newcastle, England.
The Jewish Daily Forward has released their annual Forward 50, with list choices easy to find in these categories: Activism, Community, Media & Culture, Politics, Religion, Scandal and Sports. Included on the Sports list is Dmitriy Salita, who moved to Brooklyn at age 9 and now fights under the American flag. Salita’s identity will take on special significance in December, when he faces World Boxing Association Light Welterweight Champion Amir Khan, a Muslim, in a title match that will be held in Newcastle, England.
The full Forward 50 list can be viewed here http://www.forward.com/forward-50-2009, and Salita's feature can be seen below.
The 27 year old Salita will be challenging Amir Khan for his WBA World light welterweight title on Dec. 5, 2009 at Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle, England.
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