Haney’s Dominance Ignites Ryan Garcia Call For Mega-fight, Hearn Amped Up
Devin Haney’s win over Regis Prograis has promoter Eddie Hearn chomping at the bit about matching the new WBC light welterweight champion against Ryan Garcia in a mega-fight.
Hearn points out that Ryan (24-1, 20 KOs) fights on the same platform as Haney, competing on DAZN, in the same weight class at 140, and he’s interested in battling for a world title for the first time.
While it might be a nice little money fight for Haney to fight Ryan, it wouldn’t be one that would be exciting to watch.
Ryan Garcia not ready for Haney
The 25-year-old Ryan looked like a novice and poor in his last fight against little-known fringe lightweight contender Oscar Duarte on December 2nd.
Throughout the fight, Ryan turned his back, cowering when Duarte would go on the attack, and the referee arguably enabled his behavior by warning the Mexican fighter not to hit him when he was in that posture.
The back-turning thing Ryan did turned out to be his main defense, likely saving him from getting knocked out.
That fight showed that Ryan is too unpolished to be fighting world class level fighters, and it would be bad for boxing fans for Haney to take advantage of them by peddling an expensive mismatch against Ryan Garcia on PPV.
That fight wouldn’t be worth watching, as two different types of fighters. Haney is a highly skilled welterweight-sized fighter, albeit one zero power and boring to watch, and Ryan is more of a YouTuber-level guy in the Jake Paul mold.
Haney (31-0, 15 KOs) expressed interest in fighting Ryan next, saying last night at the post-fight press conference that he would be up for a clash against him.
Still, Ryan seems to have his mind made up about wanting to take on the weakest link among the champions at 140, WBA belt-holder Rolando ‘Rolly’ Romero, and then possibly face Haney or WBO champ Teofimo Lopez.
Fan-friendly options for Haney:
- Subriel Matias
- Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis
- Terence Crawford
- Tim Tszyu
- Shakur Stevenson
- Teofimo Lopez
- Gary Antuanne Russell
- Janibek Alimkhanuly
- Edwin De Los Santos
- Raymond Muratalla
Haney could move up to 147 if he can’t get a lucrative fight next, facing either the old-timer Keith Thurman or Mario Barrios. Those are awful fights, though, and just as bad as the Prograis match-up.
Thurman is beyond washed at 35 and rarely fights at this late stage of his career. As for Barrios, he’s already been beaten by Gervonta Davis and Thurman. What’s there for Haney to gain from fighting Barrios other than for cherry-picking purposes?
The guy Haney hasn’t mentioned wanting to fight is Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis, who hits too hard and would get to his chin sooner or later to put him down for the count. It would make Haney a lot of money, but he would have no chance against Boots like he did against Prograis.
That would be fun to see how Haney’s pot-shot, jump-back fighting style would hold up under Boots Ennis’ firepower. What we saw from Haney last night against Prograis can’t be referred to as a ‘step-back’ style of defense, as it was more of a ‘jump-back’ and so boring to watch.
If you paid $75 to watch the Haney vs. Prograis fight last Saturday night, you likely felt ripped off from the value you got from the main event.
If you’re a fan that enjoys watching a fighter throw a shot and then jump back repeatedly to avoid getting hit, you liked what you saw in Haney’s clash against Prograis, but it was really hard on the eyes, making Floyd Mayweather’s dull fights during his career seem thrilling in comparison.
Boots would get to Haney sooner or later, nail him with a big shot while he was jumping back, and put him down. Of course, Haney isn’t crazy enough to fight Boots Ennis, so it’s a moot point.
Hearn describes Haney’s performance as “Picasso”
“I’m watching a one-sided beat down of arguably the best champion at 140 against a guy, as I said earlier, a generational talent. It was a masterclass,” said Eddie Hearn at the post-fight press conference, talking about Devin Haney’s win over WBC light welterweight champion Regis Prograis last Saturday night.
“The speed of foot. Every time Regis committed, he’d get hit with four or five fights. He couldn’t set his feet. He couldn’t land hardly anything, and it was like watching a masterclass,” Hearn continued about Haney.
Haney wasn’t hitting Prograis with four or five shots at a time. There only one time in the fight that Haney hit Prograis with four consecutive shots, and that was when he was off balance.
Haney was mostly throwing one or two punches, then jumping back out of harm’s way. It was a variation of how Shakur Stevenson fights. While Shakur takes a two to three-step pull-back after throwing or while being attacked, Haney jumps back, and then retreatings laterally if pursued.
It was almost as boring as Shakur’s style, and the reason it wasn’t quite at that level is that Devin would occasionally stop his retreat to throw a punch or two last night. Other than that, there wasn’t much to separate Haney from Shakur in terms of being on the dull side.
“Every time he would hurt Regis, he composed himself, he regained his shape, and he went again, and he pinged him again, and it was just [one-sided to the point of being boring to watch].
“I can only imagine how frustrating that was for Regis Prograis. I just don’t know who beats Devin Haney. At 135, it was brutal for him every time, and up at 140. This is a guy [Haney] that can go up to 147 and maybe up to 154.
“You see the size of him next to Regis Prograis, who is a big 140, and it was an absolute masterclass. It was like watching Picasso just paint his art. It was just incredible, the work of a genius. He hardly broke a sweat. You have to understand the work ethic of this young man.”
That wasn’t like watching Picasso paint a masterpiece. Watching Haney fight last Saturday was more like someone taking a crayon and scribbling on canvas, calling it a work of art, and putting a steep price tag of $75.
“He’s so fit. His team is very, very good. It’s very big, but it’s very, very good. The way he conducts his business in and out of the ring, he absolutely cuts no corners, and you saw that tonight with a performance of great maturity, as you said,” said Hearn.
Eddie wants Ryan Garcia for Haney
“The engine, the composure, everything. It was a performance well beyond his years,” said Hearn. “We’ve got so many at 140, queuing up for a big shot, but at the same time, you’ve obviously got Ryan Garcia, who’s on the same platform and should be looking for a world title, should be looking for a big fight against someone from his weight class. Why not? It’s the obvious fight to make.:
It wouldn’t be a bad idea for Ryan to fight Haney if the popular Instagram fighter had looked better in his last fight and if he’d actually fought a top guy from the 140-lb division rather than pulling an opponent from the bottom rungs of the 135-lb division. Duarte is a fringe contender, sat lightweight, and he looked beyond awful.
For fans to get their money’s worth in a Haney-Ryan fight, Ryan should prove himself against two or three of these 140-pounders:
– Gary Antuanne Russell– Arnold Barboza Jr.– Richardson Hitchins– Liam Paro
It’s safe to say that Ryan would be blown out of the water by ALL of those fighters, especially with Paro. If Ryan did beat any of them, you could argue that he at least somewhat deserves a fight with Haney.
It would still be a total mismatch, but you could make a case for Ryan deserving a title shot against Haney. Unfortunately, Ryan would never agree to fight any of those guys to earn a title shot against Haney, as he’ll just count on his popularity from his 11 million Instagram followers, for he deserves a fight for a world title at 140.
It’s kind of pathetic, though, because it turns the spot on its head when you have fighters getting world title shots based on popularity from social media rather than achievement.
What would happen in football, basketball, and hockey if teams made it to the finals based on their social media popularity rather than what they did during the season and in the playoffs?
“Everybody talks a good game, and Regis tried, but he just couldn’t make anything happen,” said Hearn. “He couldn’t set his feet, he couldn’t get in position to throw, he got more and more frustrated every time. He said when he got dropped, he was on the floor, thinking, ‘Where on earth did that come from?’”
Prograis couldn’t land because of the following:
1. He was too slow2. Too old3. Haney using the jump back style defense4. he lacked the size to beat the much bigger Haney, who looked like a welterweight.
Look at it this way. If you threw Haney in the ring with a fighter that had a tremendous size & youth advantage over him, do you think he would do well? For example, how long would Haney last if he was tossed into the ring with David Benavidez?
Even with Haney’s boring sleep-inducing jump-back style, he would be food for Benavidez, and it would not be worth the PPV price to see a mismatch of that kind.
We saw that with the Haney vs. Prograis fight last Saturday night. It would never be competitive because Prograis was too old, too small, too slow, and too washed.
“Devin was even much better than Regis could ever imagine, and he gave it everything, but it just wasn’t good enough. Yeah, for sure. We’ve been together a long time,” said Hearn when asked if he’ll be working with Haney again.
Fans already saw that Prograis was over-the-hill in his previous fight against lower-tier 140-lb fighter Danielito Zorrilla last June, winning a controversial 12 round split decision despite getting dropped twice, beaten to the bunch, and hurt multiple times by the Puerto Rican fighter. Charles Brun had Zorrilla winning that fight by a 9-3 margin.
“He’s seen what we delivered tonight with him and the team, Devin Haney Promotions. 16,000 at the Chase Center, the show, the atmosphere, the stage. It was unbelievable. There are some huge fights to bring for them. He’s going to be around for a long time,” said Hearn.