Unbeaten Jewish Star Dmitriy Salita Returns on Dec 15

New York, November 22-- DiBella Entertainment's New York stalwarts will cap off the year in the season's finale of Broadway Boxing Presented by Turning Stone Resort & Casino when they hit the ring on "Season's Beatings" Thursday night, December 15, at the Grand Ballroom at the Manhattan Center.

The announcement was made today by promoter Lou DiBella at Prime Grill restaurant in Manhattan. Unbeaten Dmitriy "Star of David" Salita will headline the card. The Brooklyn hero Salita (23-0, 14 KO's) will be looking to extend his professional unbeaten streak to 24 straight wins in the main event. The New York Golden Gloves champion has rattled off 23 consecutive wins in the pro ranks, including five in a row here in the Big Apple. In his latest score on August 25, Salita captured the NABA light welterweight championship by downing Shawn Gallegos with a ninth round TKO..

Spanish Harlem standout Edgar "El Chamaco" Santana (15-2, 10 KO's), and his sizzling style will be showcased in the co-feature. The Puerto Rican standout fighting out of New York City has relished the home cooking, reeling off six straight on DiBella Entertainment's popular Broadway Boxing series to extend his unbeaten streak to 10 in a row. The Latin star has improved with every outing, and the locals have taken a strong liking to his hard work in the ring.

The knockout artistry of Brownsville's Curtis "Showtime" Stevens will also be among the holiday gifts for fight fans. Staten Island featherweight Gary Stark, Jr. will also be in action.

Tickets are priced at $150, $100, $80, $60 and $40, and are available by calling DiBella Entertainment at 212-947-2577. Broadway Boxing Presented by Turning Stone Resort and Casino will air on a later date on MSG Network in New York, Fox Sports Net New England, Comcast Sportsnet Chicago and HDNET.

Along with Turning Stone Resort and Casino, the site and title sponsor, Broadway Boxing is also sponsored by HBO Sports, and Gallagher's Steak House, as well as Prime Grill for the season-ending card.

Dmitriy Salita

Age: 23 (4-4-82)

Residence: Brooklyn, New York

Birthplace: Odessa, Ukraine

Record: 23-0, 14 KOs

Height: 5'9"; Reach: 69"

A sensational welterweight prospect, Dmitriy is a sharp, accurate puncher with good handspeed. After he moved to Brooklyn, Dmitry was exposed to Orthodox Judaism and became an observant Jew. He strictly follows Jewish law – if he has a fight on a Saturday, it must begin after sundown, the end of the Sabbath. Dmitriy said, “Anyone who wants a good whuppin’ from me is just going to have to wait until sundown.” There are as many as 70 Jewish holy days on which he will not fight, and he follows Jewish dietary laws. When he’s training, he stays within walking distance of a synagogue for Friday and Saturday services – he’s not allowed to drive on the Sabbath. Since fighting in New York City before raucus crowds at the Manhattan Center, Dmitriy has captured five straight on the Big Apple stage to extend his record to 23 straight. He has signed an exclusive promotional agreement with DiBella Entertainment.

In his last three outings at the Manhattan Center, “Star of David” registered TKO victories to make it four straight in the two ballrooms – Hammerstein and Grand – much to the delight of the full house and his legion of fans.

Here’s a recap of his 2005 action: on August 25th , Salita went toe-to-toe with a tough-minded Shawn Gallegos, scoring a ninth round TKO at Hammerstein at 2:37 to capture the NABA Light Welterweight Championship. Louis Brown was the knockout victim on June 9th in the Grand Ballroom, as Dmitriy scored at 3:00 in the eighth round. And, he scored a third round TKO at the 1:50 mark on March 10th over Darelle Sukerow.

Salita had four victories in 2004, two of them in New York. In his first appearance on a DiBella Entertainment card entitle Home Cooking, Dmitriy wowed his followers in Brooklyn at the Oceana Atlantic in Brighton Beach on September 14th, downing Ruben Galvan in an unanimous decision score. Then, on November 18th, he made his Manhattan Center debut a winning one when scoring an eighth round unanimous decision over Paul Delgado.

Born in Odessa, Ukraine, Dmitriy moved with his family to Brooklyn at the age of nine; he said, “Basically, we came to America because Jews were discriminated against. My parents thought that my brother and I wouldn’t grow up with the opportunity to be the best that we could be. My brother, who is nine years older then I am, used to get into a lot of fights, because he was often called names. There were rumors of pogrom every now and then, and Jews would go away to the suburbs from the city. ‘Pogrom’ means that groups of people would break into homes and bash the house. I remember that my father bought a gun just in case something was to happen. It was very difficult to get top jobs or to go to top schools and still remain proud of your Judaism. I am very grateful to America for letting me pursue my goals, and have freedom of religion and speech. You don’t normally appreciate it, but when you don’t have it, you understand just how great it is to have it. Now that I am older, I understand it.”

In New York, classmates picked on Dmitriy in school; he said, “When I first started going to school, I had the clothes that I wore over in Russia. I used to get made fun of because of it, and the fact that I didn’t speak English. I had to learn how to defend myself. I got involved in karate and as time went on my brother brought me to a boxing club. That is how it all started. I got called into the principal’s office. I got suspended a few times, but I got my respect. I started kicking some ass at school.”

He started boxing at the age of 13 at the Starrett City Boxing Club, which is run by Jimmy O’Pharrow; Jimmy said, “My gym’s like a league of nations. I seen every kind of kid come through the doors, but I ain’t never seen one like this Dmitriy. Kid looks Russian, prays Jewish and fights black.”…Dmitriy said, “Jimmy runs an old school gym, a ghetto gym. My style isn’t European. It isn’t even American. It’s a city style. It’s black. I don’t know how else to say it. But some of us white boys got it like that.”…the radio at Starrett was always tuned to HOT 97; Dmitriy described it as “Blasting. A lot of Biggie. A lot of Tupac. I think that changed my style. That’s what gave me some rhythm.” ...Dmitriy had a reported amateur record of 59-5.

2001 New York Golden Gloves champion, 139 pounds - Dmitriy won the finals on 4-5-01 at Madison Square Garden in New York City; Bill Farrell of the New York Daily News reported, “In a bout that lived up to all its expectations, Dmitriy Salita battled past Joey Rios to win the Golden Gloves 139-pound open title last night at the Theater at Madison Square Garden. The 3-2 decision won by Salita in as fine a boxing match ever staged in the Golden Gloves finals earned Salita the Sugar Ray Robinson Award as the outstanding boxer in the tournament. Salita, who is as talented as they come, got into his rhythm midway through Round 2 and finally took control of the bout to earn the decision and a pair of Golden Gloves.”

Dmitriy said, “You know, with me growing up in New York, the New York Golden Gloves is a big, big deal. A lot of the great fighters that have come out of New York have all managed to win the Golden Gloves. The Golden Gloves in New York is like the Olympic Games, everyone knows about it. You really get your respect after you win the New York Golden Gloves. I thought that it was an important step, and that it would boost my professional career. Plus, I was just dying to have those Golden Gloves around my neck.”

His mother, Lyudmila, originally opposed Dmitriy’s boxing, but eventually became an enthusiastic supporter ...she passed away in January, 1999, after a two-year battle with cancer... when she was hospitalized, Dmitriy divided his time between James Madison High School, the Starrett gym, and Sloan Kettering Memorial Hospital; he said, “I’d spend the night sleeping in a chair at the hospital and wake up to do my roadwork.” Dmitriy said, “I will never compromise my beliefs. Never. It’s not a question. I have a personal relationship with God that I won’t compromise. My boxing is such a big part of my life, but it won’t get in the way of my religion. It can’t, and it won’t.”

Article posted on 22.11.2005

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