BARCLAYS CENTER – Rabbi Yuri Foreman was a former WBA super welter weight champion who was born in Russia, moved to Israel and now lives in Brooklyn.
After a two-year hiatus away from the ring, he's back and will box this Saturday on an undercard of several matches at Barclays Center.
"Sometimes you need to take a break from something you really love," Foreman said. "I did that for a while I found what I really wanted in life."
The 35-year-old left boxing back in 2013. He felt lost and needing direction so he decided to follow his heat and pursue his rabbinical studies.
However, about nine months ago, he got the urge to get back into the ring.
"My wife started going to the gym," he said. "I went with her. I started shadow boxing, and got the desire to get back in the ring."
He loves the smell of the gym. A banner honoring his WBA championship hangs on the wall in Gleanson's Gym in Brooklyn. The last time he fought in New York was in 2013 at Yankee Stadium against Miguel Cotto who he lost to the eighth round.
"That was a very special fight. I should have done better," he said.
Rabbi Yuri is loving the attention and the spotlight from his fans and residents of Brooklyn.
David 's K Deli at Barclays Center made a special delicacy for his return this Saturday.
It's called the Yuri's Knockout corned beef sandwich.
"George Foreman has the grill, I have the knockout sandwich," he said.
And what makes the scenario funnier, Yuri is vegetarian.