What had been rumored for several days has now become official, as unbeaten WBC junior lightweight champion Devin Haney agreed to defend next against popular contender Ryan Garcia in an April pay-per-view.
The announcement was jointly made by Golden Boy Promotions and DAZN earlier Friday evening that the two will meet on April 20th at a site to be determined.
‼️ Signed, sealed, delivered…𝐇𝐀𝐍𝐄𝐘 🆚 𝐆𝐀𝐑𝐂𝐈𝐀 set for the WBC junior welterweight world title on April 20th.#HaneyGarcia | LIVE on DAZN April 20th
🤝 In association with KingRy Promotions, Haney Promotions and Matchroom Boxing pic.twitter.com/jm8YU0SDuk
— Golden Boy (@GoldenBoyBoxing) February 9, 2024
Money Made Devin Haney-Ryan Garcia Happen
The announcement ends a period of “back and forth” negotiations that saw Garcia walk away from the title shot and potentially, lucrative pay-per-view and instead, pursue a possible bout with the WBA junior welterweight champion Rolly Romero. However, that never came to fruition either as Romero decided to defend against Isaac “Pitbull” Cruz on the upcoming Premier Boxing Champions pay-per-view card in Las Vegas for March 30th.
That sent the 25-year-old Garcia back to the bargaining table, where the former undisputed lightweight champion was all too ready to make a lucrative deal for himself to make his first title defense later in the Spring. Haney, also 25 years old, won that belt off of Regis Prograis in a dominant 12 round decision back on December 9th in San Francisco.
That victory came on the heels of Haney, 31-0, earlier defending the undisputed 135 lb. titles last May, when he won a close decision over multi-division world champ Vassiliy Lomachenko in Las Vegas.
Watch Dan Rafael and me discuss the Haney-Garcia bout on our BetUS Friday show by clicking play below,
Garcia’s Popularity Outweighs Lack Of Big Wins
Garcia, 24-1, was last in the ring scoring an eighth round KO over Oscar Duarte in December in Houston. That came on the heels of his biggest career challenge to date in a pay-per-view 7th round KO loss to Gervonta Davis last April in Las Vegas. Garcia is immensely popular, especially on social media, but he’s never held a world title and hasn’t won a fight against a significant contender in several years.
Meanwhile, as for Haney, he has built a strong “pound for pound” resume’ and has continued to be active. First. he lifted the undisputed 135 lb. titles off George Kambosos in June of 2022 and then, beat the Australian in a rematch six months later.
With those two wins and the victories over Lomachenko and Prograis, this will now be the fifth time that Haney has fought in under two calendar years.