A male Russian citizen begins speaking against his government because he wants working conditions to improve in Russia. The government becomes very angry and makes him an example, sentencing him to life in prison.
In jail, the man falls into a deep depression. His private life at home was a very happy one. He got married in his forties and began fathering children. Having a total of four, with his oldest currently only seven years old; they no longer have their father to support them. In fact, he finds out that his wife and children have been scattered across Russia, fully broken apart from one another.
Doing life in a Russian prison and knowing this, he becomes desperate and will do anything to get out. In prison, he begins to notice a lot of boxing going on. He begins hearing talk about a boxer who has become a legend to all the prisoners. In the 1960's, a man was ordered to serve a life sentence in this prison. In time, he became the best boxer in the entire prison then while in jail, he went on to become the Russian Heavyweight Champion. Because of this, he was released from prison.
Since that happened, the government passed a law only for this particular prison. This law states, "Anyone serving whatever amount of time, including a life sentence, would be set free if he becomes the boxing champion of Russia." This law is excluded if you have been convicted for being a terrorist, have committed two or more murders, rapes, kidnappings, etc; anything that would be considered a multiple life sentence.
Now aware of this fact and being filled with desperation, he decides to try as hard as possible to reach this seemingly impossible goal that will ultimately achieve his dream of freedom. Being 51 years old and never having done any real athletic training before, he finds himself getting into the ring with boxers in great athletic shape and mostly under the age of 35.
He continually is out-matched. With his face bloodied and body beaten, and even many times getting knocked out, with a strong determination and yearning to be with his beloved family, he knows he must continue to try. But as time goes by, his efforts are of no use. No matter how hard he tries to defeat his younger opponents, he is no match.
In his cell, he begins to feel utterly defeated. As tears run down his face, he feels the crushing reality of spending the rest of his life in prison. He is terrorized by the notion that there is no way for him to help his very young family. Completely desperate, he thinks thoughts he would never have even dreamt of in his entire lifetime. Even with this crushing weight of the reality that is upon him, he must continue to fight with all that he has, forever trying and hoping to punch through.
thinking these thoughts and sitting on his bed, he looks at the brick wall facing
the back end of his cell. In his mind he begins to have a vision of himself punching
the brick wall. Punching and fighting the wall, enduring the pain to his fists
and arms. Waiting ever patiently until he can finally break his fists through
the wall, so he can once again be free.
While thinking this and wiping a tear from the middle of his right facial cheek, he stands up in his cell reaching his hand out to touch the brick wall. As he does this, a thought begins to materialize in his mind. "If I really did punch this wall for several hours a day, maybe in a few years, my fists, hands, and punch would grow so strong that perhaps I could really put my hands (fists) through this brick wall. If I could do this, then there would be no one in all of Russia that could defeat me; I would be the champ!"
Being extremely focused, he begins punching the brick wall in his cell. He starts punching the wall lightly and as minutes go by, he begins punching harder until he is punching the wall as hard as he can; yet at the same instant, holding back the force of his blows so he doesn't break his hands or arms.
The skin on his fists begins to break open. Blood from his fists begins smearing on the wall as he continues punching it. Never have his hands and arms felt such pain with both always close to breaking. Alas, he feels he has no choice but to continue for his only other option is to spend the rest of his life in prison, without his wife and children. He also begins to exercise in his cell doing many grueling sets of push-ups and sit-ups, as well as doing other boxing skill and strengthening exercises.
After a few days go by, the prison guards notice him punching the wall in his cell and immediately put a stop to it. The captain of the guards gets the warden. After he explains the reason why he is doing this, the warden allows him to punch the brick wall and orders the guards to let him continue. In time, the entire prison population hears about him punching the brick wall in his cell.
A few prisoners joke at him, but he is not swayed and continues to try. Five days a week he goes to the prison gym, there he lifts weights, jumps rope and for several hours a week rides a stationary bike. A month after he started riding the stationary bike, a professional treadmill is bought for him to run on. A trainer teaches him how to throw a combination of punches and jabs. He also works on learning how to block and dodge punches from hitting his head and body.
Instead of punching a large punching bag and a speed bag, he only punches the brick wall in his cell every day. He refuses to fight anyone in the gym's boxing ring because he wants his fists to break into the wall first. About eight months after he started punching the brick wall, his fists begin to slightly break into it. Knowing what this could mean in time, tears begin to flow down his facial cheeks as this is happening. Moving to different areas of his cell's wall he continues to punch it for a few more hours.
A guard, doing his inmate checking rounds, looking into this man's cell becomes struck as he sees many areas of the wall with punch holes as deep as one quarter of an inch.
The guard immediately tells the head guard. A half hour later this man is put into the gym's boxing ring with the second best boxer in the prison. He knocks him out halfway into the first round, by breaking his nose, opening a cut on his face and bruising his ribs. He then fights the prison's best fighter. Even though he gets a bloody nose, he knocks this man out in the middle of the second round, by fracturing a rib, cutting and bruising his face.
Thus becoming the best boxer of the large prison; he tells the warden and guards that he is old and must punch the wall everyday or else he will lose this ability. So they get brick layers who build the walls he needs to train with.
Now being the greatest boxer in the prison and while being closely supervised by the prison guards, he is given permission to try and move up through the Russian professional heavyweight rankings but only if he continues to win.
Some of the fights are held at the prison he is in. Other matches are boxed in areas across Russia. Being very dedicated, he proceeds doing his super hard wall punching. His hands (fists) break into each wall and as he completely destroys one, a new wall is built for him. He also continues his other skill, strength and endurance training exercises.
During his climb up the Russian heavyweight rankings, the government suddenly gives the order that he shall be moved in one week to another prison where he will serve out his life sentence. After learning this, a guard tells him of this news. Knowing what this means, he begs the guard to get the captain of the guard; this is done. After he explains this situation to the head guard, he is allowed to see the warden. The warden swears he will do all he can in order to prevent this from happening. In his office the warden and secretary start making many telephone calls until they find the one or more individuals who gave this order.
Several government officials made this decision without knowing of the incarcerated man's climbing the Russian heavyweight boxing ranks. The warden urges them not to move him to another prison because of the law passed years ago, only for this particular prison. Because of his tremendous potential of becoming the heavyweight champion, he strongly stresses them to please reconsider their decision. The officials order their workers to research and find them proof that this law exists. An hour after they requested it the officials receive the proof that this law exists. Learning this, they immediately have a quick meeting. At the meeting these people of authority decide that the incarcerated contender can stay at the prison he is in.
He defeats all Russian on comers, climbing the ranks fast. Since he now has bone crushing punching abilities, more than one third of his opponents are hospitalized for severe injuries. Feeling guilty and because he is a compassionate, decent person, he asks then receives permission from the warden and the government to do the following: while having prison guards present with him, the new rising contender may visit most of his hospitalized defeated challengers to apologize and give support.
in just a few short years, he becomes the heavyweight-boxing champion of Russia.
Finally, after being in prison for eight long years, he is released from his life
Now free and being the Russian heavyweight champion, he wants to reunite with his wife and four children. A few days after being released from prison he learns the government separated and scattered them throughout Russia. Finding out that it will cost a lot of money to locate them, he gets permission from the Russian government to fight the heavyweight champion of the world who is in the United States. If he fights him, he will receive a large amount of money, which would enable him to try to find and reunite himself with his beloved family.
He asks the American champ to challenge him. The world champion tells him he must fight one of the top three ranked fighters in the world. He promises stating, "If you win I will give you a shot at my heavyweight world title." So he fights the 2nd ranked heavyweight boxer in the world, knocking him out in the 1st round, by breaking a number of his ribs and opening his opponent's face causing bleeding and giving him a bad concussion.
Finally, he fights the American champion of the world, knocking him out early in the 2nd round by opening a cut on his face, giving him a bloody-broken nose and breaking a rib.
Giving the blow-by-blow description of the fight, the cable television, pay per view sports announcer states, "This is incredible! At the age of 60, this man, the Russian champion, is now the oldest heavyweight-boxing champion of the world ever since the beginning of this sport and his story is like nothing you have ever heard before! In Russia he was sent to prison for life. In jail he hears the story about a legendary fighter who was doing a life sentence back in the nineteen 60s. In time, this other man became the best boxer in the prison. Then while in jail, this man went on to be the Russian heavyweight champion. He gained his freedom because of this. Our new champion unbelievably began punching the brick wall in his prison cell to follow pursuit. His punch became so powerful that he went on to become the Russian champion and was also set free. Now he fought the world champion to gain the challenger purse so he could find his family who he lost when he was sentenced to life in prison!"
Just after the cable television announcer finishes saying all this, the former champion hands the new world heavyweight champion his newly gained belt. Now holding it, with tears flowing down his face, he lifts it up over his head showing the entire, pay per view cable television and seated arena viewers of his proud victory. The arena explodes with shouts and cheers giving their approval. He then exits the ring with his championship belt and talks tearfully with the cable television sports announcer.
Soon after having a few more victorious championship fights, he locates his entire beloved family. In time, he decides enough purse money was won. The champion then retires, living peacefully with his family in Russia.