Wednesday Recaps: Kalajdzic and Goodman Score Big Wins in Far-Flung Places


A 10-round light heavyweight match between former world title challengers Radivoje “Hot Rod” Kalajdzic and Sullivan Barrera was the main go of the bi-monthly ProBox card at the Whitesands Events Center in Plant City, Florida. This was the thirty-ninth card at this venue and not one of promoter Garry Jonas’s best offerings (but one hesitates to be negative considering that one can livestream these events for free without stealing anything.)

Kalajdzic, whose nickname should be Eyechart ( yes, I know it’s already taken, but it’s not as if former baseball catcher Doug Gwosdz trademarked it) seized command in the second round when Barrera’s left eye began to swell. It closed completely by round four, at which point the only mystery was whether the bout would end inside the distance. To Barrera’s credit, he kept trying and almost took it to the final bell. There were only 29 seconds remaining in the final round when Kalajdzic closed the show, hitting Barrera with a salvo of punches that knocked his Cuban adversary through the ropes and flat on his back on the ring apron.

While the ending had the “wow” factor, Hod Rod’s performance wasn’t especially impressive considering that he was fighting a 42-year-old man who was making only his third start in the last five-plus years. Which isn’t to suggest that Kalajdzic (29-2, 23 KOs) isn’t worthy of a Top-10 ranking. His only losses came at the hands of Artur Beterbiev (L KO 5, no shame there; Beterbiev knocks out everybody) and former Olympian Marcus Browne in an 8-round contest in which he was the victim of an unpopular decision.

Sullivan Barrera is a former training partner of Gennadiy Golovkin at Abel Sanchez’s compound in Big Bear, California. But that was quite a while ago. He now fights out of Miami and tonight he lost the fourth time in his last five outings, reducing his record to 22-5.


What shaped up as the most competitive fight on the card turned into something of a tour-de-force for Puerto Rican welterweight Nicklaus Flaz (12-2, 8 KOs) who scored three knockdowns en route to a sixth-round stoppage of SoCal’s Luke Santamaria (14-4-1) whose trainer Javier Capatillo stopped it after Santamaria went down from a wicked left hook to the liver.

Flaz is on a nice roll since being stopped in the opening round by Janelson Bocachica. He rebounded with 8-round decisions over well-touted, undefeated prospects Brian Ceballo and Jahi Tucker prior to his stellar performance tonight against the battle-tested Santamaria.


A scheduled 8-round welterweight contest was an egregious mismatch between an undefeated fighter with 11 wins and an opponent with 11 straight losses. Kelvin Davis, now 12-0 (8 KOs) was the former and Mario Lozano, a 29-year-old policeman from Buenos Aires who took the bout on one week’s notice, was the latter.

One of three fighting brothers from Norfolk, Virginia, Davis isn’t in the same league as his brother Keyshawn, but he’s not shabby. At six-foot-one, he had a seven-inch height advantage over Lozano who folded his tent after hitting the deck at the end of the second round.

Woolongong, NSW, Australia

Early this morning (in the US time zones) Sam Goodman improved his record to 18-0 (8 KOs) with a one-sided beatdown of countryman Mark Shleibs (13-3) who was in way over his head before the referee rescued him in the fourth round.


Promoted by the Rose brothers (No Limit Boxing) who also promote Tim Tszyu and his brother Nikita, Goodman is ranked #1 at 122-pounds by the IBF and WBO. He has his sights set on a match with the division’s unified champion Naoya Inoue and based on his showing today he wouldn’t be a pushover.

The semi-windup produced a big upset when Endry Saavedra, trailing on two of the scorecards, stopped local fan favorite Isaac Hardman in the eighth round. Saavedra hails from Tijuana, a city known for spawning spoilers.
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