No professional boxer, that I know of currently practicing, uses his legs as much during a bout as Yuri Foreman, the junior middleweight from Park Slope, Brooklyn.
When his right knee betrayed him fully during his June 5, 2010 Yankee Stadium title defense against Miguel Cotto, the boxer was left with a diminished arsenal which sapped his effectiveness and much of his desire to compete. But Foreman, now 32, had surgery and took time to heal. He now has his legs under him. It was evident on Wednesday evening at Roseland in Manhattan.
Foreman (31-2 with 8 KOs) looked to be pretty darn close to where he was when he was in the mix as one of the best 154 pounders on the planet in earning a unanimous decision win over Jamaal Davis (14-9-1) of Philadelphia on a show promoted by Lou DiBella along with 50 Cent.
The fight was all Foreman. Davis didn't win a round and never switched up his attack enough to change the tone of the bout.
"I felt good, I felt fluid," Foreman told NYFightblog after the eight rounder, which was seen by celebs, including superfan Rosie Perez, Burt Young aka Pauly from "Rocky" and actress Susan Sarandon. "I feel a lot better working with trainer Pedro Saiz."
The former professional fighter Saiz, who fought from 1990-2002 and finished with a 25-9-3 mark, thought highly of Foreman's effort versus Davis.
"I give Yuri an A," Saiz said. "He was disciplined, he's a hard worker, never complains."
Saiz wanted Foreman to use his main strength, his ability to move constantly and smartly, which enables him to land but be extremely elusive and avoid return fire. "He knows the best defense is to stay busy," Saiz said.
So, is Foreman at or near his pre-surgery peak?
"He's there," the trainer said.
And if promoter Dibella set up a scrap with IBF champ Ishe Smith or WBO titlist Zaurbek Baysangurov, would Saiz advise Foreman, after his third comeback bout following a two-year hiatus, to take the opportunity?
"I would take it," Saiz said. It looks like, however, that Team Foreman will book another eight rounder and then take stock. Another ten rounder could be booked or, perhaps, by the end of the year, DiBella will look to make a deal for a most meaningful fight for Foreman.