Devin Haney is considered the most wanted man in boxing. The undisputed lightweight champion, everyone wants a piece of the California-born star, as his status in boxing has resulted in a big target on his back.
Haney last fought in May, beating Vasiliy Lomachenko via unanimous decision. The busy wrestler continued to prove his worth by taking on some of the best in sports.
The question on everyone’s mind is simple: Who’s next for Haney?
The 24-year-old has options, from fighting within his division to moving weight. There may be obstacles in his way, from purses to sports politics. Another thing that may affect him is a court date in August after being charged with a felony charge of carrying a concealed weapon in a vehicle. The results of that hearing will no doubt play a role in mapping Haney’s future in the ring.
Pending legal factors aside, The Sporting News takes a look at some of Haney’s most likely dance partners.
Devin Haney’s Next Fight: Ranking Most Likely Opponents
- Age: 25
- Record: 19-1 with 13 knockout wins
- Current Titles: WBO and The Ring super lightweight titles
Now that Teófimo López is back after a brief “retirement”, a clash with Haney is possible. Reigning WBO and The Ring super lightweight champion Lopez appears to be on a collision course with Haney following multiple jabs on social media.
Haney expressed his desire to compete at 140 pounds. As the undisputed lightweight champion, he would have been able to challenge for the WBO title immediately. Lopez called Haney after it was announced that he was back, ready to prove that he is the future of boxing, not Haney.
“I came out of retirement (I guess) because the next step was for Devin Haney to fight, sorry, Arnold Barboza for my WBO championship title at 140lbs. F’ that. I’m tired of helping this kid to be something he’s not. And that is a true champion!”
Lopez, a former IBF, WBA and WBO lightweight champion, has beaten Richard Commey and Lomachenko. Seeming motivated in his new division, perhaps “The Takeover” can convince Haney to move up to face him.
At this point, this fight seems like the most likely option.
- Age: 26
- Record: 20-1 with ten knockout wins
- Current Titles: N/A
Two dynamic fighters, the idea of Haney vs. Shakur Stevenson has fight fans salivating. Can the two make a deal, or will negotiations over his purse affect a fight?
Stevenson, a former WBO featherweight champion and WBO and WBC super featherweight champion, expressed his desire to move up to lightweight after losing weight against Robson Conceicao in September 2022. Haney is not shy about taking on to the best, but both are stagnant.
As for the purses, Stevenson is looking for a 50/50 fight. He turned down an offer that would result in a 25% purse. Since then, there has been debate about what the two should accept, considering Haney accepted a low offer to fight George Kambosos Jr. in Australia for lightweight gold.
“No, I’m not going to take 25%, but you already knew that. Little brother, be realistic.”
Since then, Stevenson has been mouthing “sign the contract” to Haney wherever they are.
If the two fight, it would be a very scientific fight, since they are both elite boxers. It would be the fight to make if Haney stays at lightweight.
- Age: 28
- Record: 29-0 with 27 knockout wins
- Current Titles: WBA Lightweight Title (Regular)
If Gervonta Davis vs. Ryan Garcia was a dream fight for boxing fans, Davis vs. Haney could top her. Davis, the WBA (regular) lightweight champion, is credited as champion, but Haney holds all of the division’s legitimate belts. A fight to prove who is the king of the division could result in a fight for eternity.
Talking with sports newsHaney knew the winner would be crowned boxing’s next big thing, which doesn’t faze him.
“They have to go through me,” Haney said. “But at the end of the day, I know these fights will eventually happen. It’s just part of the fighting game. It doesn’t matter if Ryan or ‘Tank’ wins, they will eventually need another opponent to fight, so it’s part of boxing.”
Davis has just been released from prison following his involvement in a hit and run incident. He also works with PBC, even while separate from Mayweather Promotions. Haney recently worked with Top Rank but is a free agent. Could they both work together to make a fight happen?
This all depends on what weight class Haney decides to fight at and whether both men can keep things civil.
Vasiliy Lomachenko Rematch
- Age: 35
- Record: 17-3 with 11 knockout wins
- Current Titles: N/A
In what was Haney’s biggest test to date, he defeated Vasiliy Lomachenko, the former WBA, WBO and The Ring lightweight champion. The May fight saw Haney land 110 of 405 punches (27.2%), with Lomachenko landing 124 of 564 (22%). The judges scored the contest 116-112, 115-113, and 115-113 to Haney, with the result being considered controversial.
The result and the champion’s skills have been questioned on social media by passionate fans. Many have demanded a rematch. Haney is open to the idea if it makes sense.
“I never said that I would not fight him again, my father said that I would not fight him again,” Haney said in The Dance Project through social boxing. “I never said if I would or would not do it. I’ll fight anyone if it makes sense and everything lines up. I’ll fight everyone, and I’ve been saying it forever.
“I know that if I beat someone once, I can beat them twice. It’s never about not fighting him again, it just has to make sense. At this point, nothing has made it to my table that makes sense yet. But if he does it, then he does it.
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Given the list of opponents Haney will face, and the opportunity to move up in weight, a rematch seems less likely.
- Age: 3. 4
- Record: 29-1 with 24 knockout wins
- Current Titles: N/A
Although Haney v. Regis Prograis is a fight that fans may not have interest in, at least compared to the other options, it has some traction. That is, according to Eddie Hearn.
Prograis, a former WBA super lightweight champion, is riding a five-fight win streak. He defeated José Zepeda in 2022 to win the WBC title and outpointed Danielito Zorrilla in June to retain the belt.
hear said IFL TV has spoken to Team Haney about a fight. If he doesn’t face Ryan Garcia, Prograis could very well face Haney.
“We made an offer to Devin and Bill Haney, I think we’re close to that fight, I spoke to Devin tonight, I’ll see him in LA this week,” Hearn said via social boxing. “Ryan Garcia has now been approached to fight Regis Prograis, but Jack Catterall wants him. Regis Progrias is in a great position right now, probably due to lackluster performance.
“Devin wants that fight, it’s a massive fight for DAZN. Ryan Garcia wants the fight, we’ll talk to his team, we haven’t done it yet, but we’ll see what happens.”