There was a bar mitzvah scheduled in June for Yankee Stadium, and it’s still going to take place, but with slightly more impressive entertainment. The Yankees organization announced Friday that the young guest of honor is almost certainly going to share the stadium on his big day with the WBA junior middleweight title fight between Miguel Cotto and the current champion, Brooklyn rabbinical student Yuri Foreman.
Promoter Bob Arum has been pushing to move the fight from its currently scheduled venue at Madison Square Garden to the Bronx to accommodate larger crowds, but the day he wanted was already taken. Jonathan Ballan, the lead bond lawyer for the financing of the new stadium, had already reserved it, including the use of the center field video screen, for the June 5 bar mitzvah of his son, Scott. In return for relinquishing their reservations, the Ballans have reportedly been promised a private meeting with the combatants before the fight and special seating for their guests.
Foreman in particular is excited about the new venue
“It’s a tremendous opportunity. It’s something I’ve never ever dreamed,” he said Friday. “It’s where Joe Louis fought Max Schmeling, you know? For me to be fighting in Yankee Stadium is historical, being part of the history.”
In addition to the Louis-Schmeling fight, the previous building which was called Yankee Stadium also hosted Ali-Norton and bouts with Rocky Marciano, Ezzard Charles, Archie Moore, Sugar Ray Robinson, Max Baer, and Primo Carnera
The Yankees are still in final negotiations with Aron, who says that if negotiations fall through the fight will remain at the Garden on June 12, the currently scheduled date. If they do stick to the original date, Cotto, a native of Puerto Rico, will be fighting the day before the Puerto Rican Day parade.