By Brian Webber: Bob Arum says he will offer to extend Devin Haney’s contract with Top Rank by offering him a shot at fighting the winner of the June 10th contest between WBO light welterweight champion Josh Taylor and Teofimo Lopez.
If Haney is dead at the weight this Saturday for his fight against Vasily Lomachenko, he could smell the coffee and realize that he’s got to move up to 140 unless he gets the opportunity to face Gervonta Davis to make life-changing money.
Fighting the Taylor-Teofimo winner would give Haney a chance to immediately become a world champion at 140 without having to work his way into the opportunity the hard way by beating the top contenders.
Interestingly, Arum says he’ll offer the Taylor vs. Lopez winner against Haney even if he loses to Lomachenko. That probably won’t go over well with the boxing public, as it would be a situation where Haney would be backing into a title shot and effectively being rewarded for failure.
It just shows you how boxing has changed. Nowadays, it’s more about popularity than accomplishment. A perfect example of that is what we just witnessed last weekend with Rolando ‘Rolly’ Romero getting a shot to fight for the vacant WBA light welterweight title against Ismael Barroso after losing his previous fight to Gervonta Davis and sitting out of the ring for 12 months.
“If Haney wins or loses, he’s going to go up to 140 pounds, and we have the winner of Josh Taylor – Teofimo [Lopez], so I think that’s somewhat attractive to him,” said Bob Arum to ProBox TV on his plans to over Devin Haney a fight against the winner of the June 10th contest between WBO light welterweight champion Josh Taylor and Teofimo Lopez.
“He [Haney] has trouble making 135 lbs, so it’s not going to be easy [to stay at lightweight beyond Saturday’s fight with Vasily Lomachenko].
“We picked him up when we got involved with this Kambosos fight, so if he decides to fight for another promoter at 140 lbs, God love him. That’s what being a free agent is,” said Arum.
Arum expects the massive-sized Haney (29-0, 15 KOs) to move up to 140 after he defends his undisputed lightweight championship against Vasily Lomachenko this Saturday night in Las Vegas.
The Top Rank boss Arum believes that Haney has outgrown the 135-lb division because it’s become difficult for him to make weight to stay in that class.
However, if Haney chooses to stay at lightweight, Arum would like him to fight Shakur Stevenson next. That would be a massive fight for the boxing world, substantially increasing the winner’s popularity.
One gets the sense that Haney isn’t eager to mix it up with the former two-division world champion Shakur (20-0, 10 KOs) because his talent and fighting style could prove to be kryptonite for him, especially if he’s drained from coming down from 160 to make the 135-lb limit.
Devin’s dad, Bill Haney, wants Gervonta Davis for his son next, provided that he successfully defeats Lomachenko (17-2, 11 KOs) on Saturday. Tank Davis would give Haney his biggest career payday, and it would be a reason for him to train as hard as possible to drain down to 135 one last time.