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Ryan Garcia vs Devin Haney: A Crossroads Fight


PhilBoxing.com





On April 20, 2024 former WBC interim lightweight champion Ryan “KingRy” Garcia (24-1, 20KOs) will challenge former undisputed (WBC/WBA/WBO/IBF) lightweight (135lbs) champion and current WBC junior welterweight (140bs) champion Devin Haney (31-0, 15KOs). This is an important fight in the careers of both fighters because the winner will likely move on to more “Big Fights” for more multimillion dollar purses against Boxing Stars such as Gervonta “Tank” Davis and Shakur Stevenson. The loser will likely face an uphill battle to reestablish his career in the junior welterweight division which will only be done with a victory over a top contender or a world champion. What do we know about the defending champion Devin Haney?

At 25 years old Haney has already accomplished what many other fighters dream about. He is a two division world champion, a millionaire, and is guided by his Father who serves as his Trainer/Manager. Those of us who follow boxing know that Father and Son teams in boxing generally don’t work, but some do, and it seems the Haney father and Son collaboration is working.

Haney won the WBC lightweight “interim” title in 2019 against Zaura Abdullaev and was later elevated from “interim” to being fully recognized as the WBC lightweight champion the same year when he successfully defended against Alfredo Santiago. Haney became Undisputed light champion by traveling to Australia and defeating George Kambosos, Jr for his 3 world titles to add to his. After a rematch with Kambosos which was a repeat of their first fight, he defended his titles against former 3 division Champion Vasiliy Lomenchenko. While it was a close fight that victory could have gone to either fighter, many observers thought that Lomachenko deserved the decision victory.

After the Lomachenko fight, Haney said he could no longer make the 135lbs limit and opted to move up to the 140lbs division where he recently defeated Regis Prograis to capture his second world title in as many divisions. Haney will next face Garcia who is coming off a loss to Gervonta “Tank” Davis, but a very successful Pay Per View (PPV) event last April 2023. Haney must defeat Garcia which will lead to the coveted “Big Fights” he desires. Haney has also talked of moving up to the welterweight (147lbs) division that is currently ruled by #1 “Pound for Pound” great Terrance “Bud” Crawford. Haney certainly has the body frame for the 147lbs division because there have been reports he hydrates to anywhere between 150lbs-155lbs by the sound of the first bell for his fights 24hrs after official weigh in.

What do we know of Ryan “KingRy” Garcia?

In and out of boxing Ryan Garcia is very popular. Garcia has 10 million Instagram followers, as per internet reports. His PPV fight against “Tank” Davis sold 1.2 million PPV sales! Only a few current active fighters in boxing can achieve those PPV sales. Garcia also has an interesting “back drop” to his career. His father Henry is one of his trainers, but his lead trainers have been high profile trainers such as Joe Goossen (twice trained Garcia), Eddy Reynoso (Trainer of future Hall of Famer Canelo), and now by Derrick James (trainer of former and current world champions Errol Spence and Jermell Charlo).

After Garcia's defeat to “Tank”, his Promoters did not attend the Post fight Press conference and neither did his former Trainer, Joe Goosen. Garcia has publicly feuded with his Promoters (Golden Boy) Oscar De La Hoya and Bernard Hopkins on social media, press conferences. The most interesting feud was regarding his choice of opponents. Garcia wanted to face WBA junior welterweight champion Rolando “Rolly” Romero. He went as far as saying that’s his next opponent was “Rolly” and he was not fighting Devin Haney. He had to do an about face and accused his Promoters of lying to him about the Romero fight and then signed for the Haney fight.

The change of Trainers, his Promoters not attending the Press Conference after his loss to “Tank”, and feuding with his Promoters will all likely be in the proverbial “rear view mirror” if Garcia defeats Haney on April 20, 2024. Both fighters need a win this April. If Garcia does not win, he will prove to only be a social media personality who could box a little bit against the right opponents. Haney needs a win to establish himself as someone who can truly fight and not just a junior middle weight (154lbs) previously fighting at lightweight and now junior welterweight. The stakes are truly high for both fighters. Their match will surely be an interesting “crossroad” fight. This writer picks Ryan Garcia by split decision victory.

Boxing Notes

The boxing world eagerly anticipates who Super middleweight champion Canelo will fight next on May 4, 2024. Most thought that by now we would now. Let’ s hope when Canelo makes his announcement it’s a worthy opponent…Fury vs Usyk will finally fight on May 18, 2024, for Undisputed Heavyweight championship. The word is Fury has gotten into shape plans to win and has no immediate plans to retire. Let see what happens…Undisputed Welterweight champion Terrance Crawford has no current opponent now that Spence is recuperating from eye surgery and Canelo has stated he will not be fighting Crawford. Tyzu vs Crawford sounds good. Even junior middleweight champion Jermell Charlo (Charlo twin who last fought Canelo) vs Crawford is still an entertaining fight…Who will Gervonta “Tank” Davis fight? Rumors are he will not fight Connor Benn at welterweight (147lbs) fight. The “Big Fights” for Davis are clearly at 135lbs or 140lbs.

Contact Writer: RLuvsboxing@aol.com


***Ralph Rimpell is a writer based out of New York and is a Boxing Correspondent for Philboxing.com. Ralph holds an undergraduate degree from City University of New York. He has been a Boxing Writer for over ten years having written for several top boxing websites on the World Wide Web. Before becoming a writer, Ralph's passion was for professional wrestling until he realized professional wrestling was entertainment and not a real sport. It was at that time the 1984 US Olympic team made up of future stars such as Evander Holyfield, Meldrick Taylor, Pernell Whitaker, etc. entered the professional ranks and signed with promotional outfit Main Events.It was also at that time a young exciting Heavyweight originally hailing from Brooklyn named Mike Tyson also turned professional and became the face of boxing. Young boxing fan Ralph just couldn't get enough of boxing as a large part of it was being broadcast on "free TV". As time went on, Ralph felt boxing writers were not being forthcoming with their boxing coverage, opinion pieces, interviews, etc. So Ralph decided to write an article and submitted it to a Boxing website thinking it would be deleted and ignored by the Editor. To Ralph's surprise his article was posted on their website and the readers embraced it. The rest is history.

"I thank God for the Internet because it has created opportunities for writers like myself who likely would not have been given an opportunity to write for print publications. I hope someday soon to expand my role in Boxing on different levels." -- Ralph Rimpell



Click here to view a list of other articles written by Ralph Rimpell.


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