Image Credit: Ed Mulholland/Matchroom Boxing
Devin Haney will defend his WBC World Lightweight title against Yuriorkis Gamboa this Saturday, Nov. 7th at Hard Rock Live at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood, Florida.
Take a step back to the last quarter of 2019.
The three month period that started boxing’s new lightweight division towards the “Takeover”.
Earlier in September 2019, Devin “The Dream” Haney defeated Zaur Abdullaev (11-0) for the WBC interim lightweight title and later became the youngest (i.e. latest born) world champion in boxing.
In November 2019, Haney made his first title defense against Alfredo Santiago (12-0) winning by unanimous decision. This solidified him as a champion since he was elevated as the WBC lightweight champion after the previous champ Vasyl Lomachenko was promoted to “Franchise Champion” by the WBC.
Then on December 19th 2020, Teofimo Lopez won the IBF title spectacularly. He connected with a big right hand on Richard Commey finishing him with a second-round TKO.
Finally, on December 28th, 2019, Gervonta “Tank” Davis made his Atlanta debut against Yuriorkis Gamboa who was on a four-fight win streak. Tank won in the 12th round via TKO winning the vacant WBA (regular) lightweight title entering the division with a statement.
Since then, both Tank Davis and Teofimo Lopez have had statement wins that have cemented the lightweight division as the new “it” division.
This weekend, Devin Haney steps into the ring against Gamboa to add his name to the collection of lightweights keeping the division at the top of boxing.
“I have a lot of things that I have to do to get the win on Saturday,” said Haney at the fight week press conference. “The main thing is to go into the ring and dominate, I don’t want to just get the win, I want to make a statement. This will be a statement victory. I want to go in the ring and show Gamboa I’m the best fighter he’s been in the ring with.”
Haney (24-0, 15 KOs) is back in action for the first time since injuring his right shoulder in the Alfredo Santiago fight.
“Yuriokis Gamboa is a dangerous and experienced fighter,” said Haney. “He’s a former unified world champion, and he has been in the ring with some of the best. He hurt Terence Crawford with a big shot, so his power is not to be ignored. He beat Orlando Salido who beat Vasiliy Lomachenko.
“Less than a year ago he took Gervonta Davis into the 12th round, something no one has ever been able to do. Gamboa is a true warrior and I’m not taking him lightly. I’ve called out all the top names, and I finally got someone who will challenge me for my title. I intend on making a statement in this fight. My hunger is on another level. It’s time to show the world who the best fighter in boxing is and that’s me!”
With Ryan Garcia chasing his first world title against Luke Campbell on December 5th, the lightweight division is overtaking the welterweights as the one to watch.
Now the pressure falls on Haney to stay in the picture.