Nikolai “Kolya” Sokolov, a Russian sailor during the 1920’s who becomes grounded in America when he gets embroiled in heavy debt. Homeless and in need of money, he takes up boxing — where he meets Dominic Merle. Long story short, he ends up living in Merle’s abode for the price of a small rent and fighting
beating Merle whenever he wants.
It works out quite well :D