Posted on 02/09/2024
By: Sean Crose
ESPN is reporting that junior welterweight champion Devin Haney is set to square off against the popular Ryan Garcia on the 20th of April in Las Vegas. This is a major bout, one which presents Haney with the opportunity to defeat one of the sport’s featured attractions while offering Garcia the opportunity to win his first world championship. Indeed, the Californian has yet to fight for a world title belt. While it’s true that nothing is in writing yet (it’s always good to keep in mind that virtually anything can happen in boxing), the 31-0 Haney and the 24-1 Garcia have been circling each other for some time now.
Haney is nothing if not a highly skilled individual, so highly skilled that he’s not afraid to avoid explosiveness in order to earn himself a win. This was much the case when he bested George Kambosos for the second time in a row back in 2022. Yet the San Francisco native can be a wonder to behold in the ring at times, as well. Haney’s brilliant victory over then junior welterweight champion Regis Prograis this past December was an absolute clinic. What’s more, the 25 year old’s high octane and razor close win against Vasyl Lomachenko last May showed Haney can rise to the occasion and engage in blistering combat when the situation calls for it.
While Haney is a fighter who by and large lets his gloved fists do the talking, Garcia arguably inhabits the role of modern celebrity. The 25 year old is a social media fixture, airing his thoughts and career dramas in public for the world to see. Garcia is more than simply a pop culture presence, however. Fast, hard hitting, and gutsy, the fighter known as “King Ry” is extremely entertaining to watch in action. Even when he suffered his lone defeat (against Gervonta Davis in a legitimate superfight last April) Garcia was able to remain a popular and lucrative attraction. In short, in spite of his limitations, Garcia isn’t a fighter whose going to stink the arena out while cruising to an easy victory. He’s a warrior, through and through.
They may be entirely different men, but Haney and Garcia know each other well. As amateurs, these two battled a full half dozen times, winning three fights a piece. That was then, however, and as things stand, Haney would be likely to enter the ring to face Garcia a considerable favorite. Again, though, virtually anything can happen in the sport of boxing.