By Miguel Rivera
In his first year of eligibility, former world champion Ivan Calderon of Puerto Rico did not receive enough votes to enter the Boxing Hall of Fame.
With merit, motivation and unlimited eligibility, Calderon is confident that he will eventually enter the International Boxing Hall of Fame in the future.
A few weeks ago, three names were elected to the Hall of Fame: the Mexico's Erik Morales, Ukrainian Vitali Klitschko and Ronald 'Winky' Wright of the United States.
"The moment came for Winky Wright. My moment will also come," said Calderon to Fernando Reyes.
Morales and Klitschko were heavily favored for two of the three positions. Morales was a champion in four divisions and Klitschko was a classic heavyweight champion who retired with a belt.
Wright unified the super welterweight division and beat the likes of Shane Mosley, Trinidad and Ike Quartey.
Calderón understood that his battle for Hall of Fame votes was with Wright and that was the case, according to a source who told him how the election process happened.
"When I heard about those three names. I saw two as the favorites (Morales and Klitschko). My battle was with Winky. They told me that I was among the final five with Ricky Hatton [being the fifth] and they had to choose three," Calderon revealed to Fernando Reyes.
"The important thing is to continue coming out on the ballots. My respects go to Winky."
The Hall of Fame does not reveal what the voting process is like beyond detailing that each voter has the right to select 10 candidates and that the three that get the most votes are elected. The Hall does not reveal the list of candidates either.
Calderón does not lose hope either. Panamanian Hilario 'Bujía' Zapata, who saw action in 24 title fights, waited a long time but eventually got in. Zapata was elected to the Hall in 2016, 13 years after his first eligibility.
"He was also at 108 pounds, so I do not lose hope," Calderon said.
One piece of information that could help Calderón, in his case, towards the immortality center is that he remains active in the boxing industry, which gives him global exposure. Calderón is a commentator for boxing fights and also trains Puerto Rican prospect, Jeyvier Cintrón.
"I say that, if he did not enter as a boxer, I can do it as a commentator or coach. I'm not in a hurry," said Calderón, who finished his career with a 35-3-1 record. He was champion between 2003 and 2010.