Devin Haney speaks on the Franchise Title and what’s next after November 9!
On November 9, Devin “The Dream” Haney (23-0, 15 KO’s) will appear on the under-card of a pair of YouTubers grudge match. In the main event, YouTubers KSI and Logan Paul will stage a rematch of their August 2018 dustup.
The upcoming do-over will take place in the Staples Center located in Los Angeles, California and will air live on the DAZN app.
AN UNLIKELY DANCE FLOOR
When Haney squares up to do battle, he will do so against Alfredo “Ojo” Santiago (12-0, 4 KO’s). Santiago, who hails from the Dominican Republic, was a last minute opponent for Haney. Sure, the main event is something of a glorified backyard brawl with television cameras present.
However, there is sure to be a ton of eyes watching. For that reason alone, purely as a businessman, it was mandatory for The Dream get in on high-profile card.
“I want to go in there and showcase my full arsenal. If he [Santiago] can stand up through it, if he can stand up through the storm, you know, it would be great.
“I would be able to show the boxing fans the skills that I have. If he can’t, then I’ll get him out of there.”
A ROUND OF MUSICAL TITLES
Assuming that Haney is victorious, many are curious as to who he may face next. On September 13, Haney defeated Zaur Abdullaev (11-1, 7 KO’s) to become the interim WBC world lightweight champion.
With the new title, Haney was the mandatory challenger for Vasiliy “Hi Tech” Lomachenko’s (14-1, 10 KO’s) full title.
That was until Hi Tech high-tailed it out of the way of Haney’s professional cross-hairs. After petitioning to be recognized as a controversial ‘franchise champion,’ Lomachenko’s request was granted.
Therefore, when he was re-titled as the ‘franchise champion’, Haney was elevated to full WBC world lightweight champion. He expresses his sentiments in an interview with Beyond the Gloves.
“The franchise belt is a very confusing title, it’s actually a title, it’s not even a belt. You know, it’s confusing because they’re saying that Loma can fight and be undisputed but someone else couldn’t win the title.
“So, how can it be undisputed if there is a whole other champion, which is me? It’s really confusing…The franchise belt, me personally, I wouldn’t want the franchise belt. If I had a mandatory I would fight my mandatory or vacate, and that’s what I feel.
“But to each their own.”
WHOS NEXT ON THE MENU?
Haney is a true fighter that takes his legacy seriously. From this perspective, he would have loved to have taken the belt from the champ by force. The benefit here is twofold.
First, he would side-step any opportunity for folks to call him a paper champion. Second, he realizes the tremendous respect that Lomachenko holds in boxing circles.
Had the Dream been able to dethrone Hi-Tech in the ring, he would have the first major scalp that he was searching for.
While Haney is still hungry for a match with Loma, that is not what he foresees as the biggest match on the horizon. Haney reveals that he honestly feels that the biggest fight he can make is with Ryan “The Flash” Garcia (19-0, 16 KO’s).
Both are a part of a new freshman crop of extremely talented young boxers and both are very friendly with the other.
Each also enjoys a particularly large fan base when considering how relatively fresh they are to the game.
“At the top of my hit list, there are a lot of great fighters in the 135 pound weight division. There are a lot of big fights. I think the biggest fight would be me and Ryan Garcia.
“I think after that I would go with, I think its 50/50 between Loma and Tank. Some people say he’s [Vasiliy Lomachneko] pound for pound, so if I beat him I’d be at the top.”
Aside from Garcia and Lomachenko, Haney would take immense interest in penning a contract with Gervonta “Tank” Davis (22-0, 21 KO’s).
The two have already begun woofing back and forth via social media. There is no doubt that not only would their action be good, the build up to the fight would also be quite memorable.
For Haney, legitimately dethroning Lomachenko, fighting a friend in Garcia or going to war with a dangerous fellow talent like Davis are all simply strategic business moves, like his decision to appear on the KSI v Logan card.
So in the name of getting some of these majors fights that are potentially on the table, let’s hope that Haney takes care of business on Saturday!
“I mean, it’s really no beef, it’s just boxing you know. People got confused. We’re just trying to build a fight and we’re trying to fight the best in the weight class.
“He may take it personal, you know. He gets in his feelings a lot but at the end of the day, it’s just boxing.”
By: Bakari Simpson