Devin Haney debuts on DAZN on Saturday
Devin Haney is one of those special fighters that don’t come around often. We have a few of them right now, but no need to list them in this piece.
Haney is a young, 20-year-old, beating up most people he spars in the gym with clips of these beatdowns ending up on his social media platforms. Haney’s interactivity using social media platforms makes him along with Ryan Garcia, the two boxers who young people are growing up with, not unlike a vlogger, as opposed to say a traditional boxing prospect.
Combine Haney’s terrific marketing ability he also has skills including the ability to box and punch as well as undefeated fighting former world title contender and/or top 15 level opposition.
On this coming Saturday, May 25th, Haney will make his DAZN debut after spending the last two fights on ShoBox: The Next Generation, and being potentially groomed as Showtime’s future investment, but Matchroom Boxing USA, and Eddie Hearn had other plans signing Haney and his promotional company, Devin Haney Promotions, to their banner, and bringing their content to DAZN.
“When I first met Eddie and the Matchroom Boxing team it felt like the perfect fit. Me and my team [SIC] spoke with Eddie about what we wanted and we were able to make it fit. Eddie recognizes me as a promoter, they are willing to work with me and build my brand and company at the same time. said Haney of why he joined with Matchroom Boxing.
“A lot of other promoters didn’t recognize me as a promoter, they just wanted to give me money and buy me out. Matchroom Boxing see me as a top fighter that they want to get behind, I would be important elsewhere, but Eddie made it clear that they are going to push me and get behind me.” said Haney
The glowing endorsement from Haney speaks volumes as he will be headlining his first card on DAZN after 2018 fighter of the year Alekasandr Usyk pulled out of the main event slot with a bicep injury. Haney will face a very good opponent in Antonio Moran, who just last year had an extremely close and competitive fight with two-division world champion Jose Pedraza. In fact, after a close fight with Pedraza, Pedraza went on to become the WBO lightweight champion defeating Ray Beltran.
People can say what they want, but Haney is doing it right, improving opposition slowly over time, but never taking a step backward.
“Getting the fights I want has been a challenge, a lot of guys have turned me down, saying there’s no point or not making enough money, so that’s been a real challenge. It’s me versus me, when I am in the gym I am so far ahead of a lot of guys that it’s me challenging myself, pushing myself, seeing how far I can go rather than seeing how far I can outrun another guy – how fast can I push myself?”
This in part is the Devin Haney conundrum that they hope to fix in 2019 as, without major television dates or distribution with huge budgets, the finical risk for an opponent’s career from a loss to Haney outweighed the benefit. With one of the more marquee promoters in the U.S., Haney is looking now to get the big fights he is hoping for. In his last three fights, this has changed and Haney sees this as the start to something new, as his last opponent has been world title contender, undefeated or well-ranked fighters.
“Boxing is something that I love so it doesn’t feel like a job to me, but the job is not done, I want to be a multi-weight champion and I want to rule the sport as a pound-for-pound star. When I am the face of boxing down the line, who knows what will happen, but right now those big goals are keeping me motivated.”
Haney is impressive as an athlete and a technician, typically you only see one or the other, not both. Though some criticize his power, the power is there, Haney is just young and things take time, or I could be wrong, but I truly think Haney has solid punching-power.
Sadly, like most things in boxing, the non-sense talks precedent as most media outlets have focused on a rivalry between his contemporary Teofimo Lopez, who has trash-talked him in the media. The two at some point are on a collision course, but most of the content creating between the two of them are simply just opinions, yet most people when they get the opportunity to interview Haney either bring up his parallels to Floyd Mayweather Jr. or his feud with Teofimo Lopez, but never about the run he is on in the lightweight division sadly as he is ranked in the top 15 of all four of the major sanctioning bodies.
Haney is one of a handful of exciting young fighters, who fans should get behind early as he will be interesting bouts over the course of the next few years, his DAZN debut should be a good test, and an entertaining affair.