Devin Haney vs Jorge Linares has been in the works since the teams of Ryan Garcia and Devin Haney both expressed their desire to meet later. Garcia is Devin Haney’s mandatory challenger but won’t call the fight at this time as he prefers to wait until Haney-Garcia becomes a bigger business fight.
As a result, Devin Haney vs Jorge Linares will mark a voluntary WBC Lightweight title defense for Haney (as he is allowed to do) before he is ordered to fight his second mandatory Javier Fortuna within 90 days. Devin Haney vs Jorge Linares will headline Matchroom USA on DAZN at the Mandalay Bay Center in Las Vegas with 50% capacity.
Devin Haney was also in talks to fight Ukrainian Vasyl Lomachenko, but Top Rank’s Bob Arum said that the fight would be easier to do when Haney is a free agent and they can do this fight on ESPN and not DAZN. Arum has a promotional contract with Lomachenko and therefore Haney-Lomachenko cannot take place without the involvement of TR.
According to Mike Coppinger of The Athletic, Devin Haney will earn $ 3 million for his title defense against Linares. According to the CSAC, he made $ 1 million to fight Santiago in November 2019 and several reports claim he made around $ 2 million to fight Yuriorkis Gamboa in November 2020.
Devin Haney vs Jorge Linares: WBC lightweight world title
Devin Haney (25-0) started his professional career in Mexico at the age of 17 and quickly set an 18-0 record in two years fighting easily.
Haney leveled up for the first time in May 2018 and went on to make the front page of 3 Showtime ShoBox cards in a row for 6 months creating a profile and name in the US under the promotion of Showtime.
Haney then signed with relatively new players to the US Matchroom market and, due to Oleksandr Usyk’s withdrawal, had the opportunity to make headlines for DAZN when he debuted in Matchroom. He didn’t disappoint by providing a KO of the Year against Antonio Moran.
Haney fought for the provisional WBC title at the Madison Square Garden theater against Zaur Abdullayev for the opportunity to fight Vasyl Lomachenko, but the WBC controversially made Loma franchise champion after beating Campbell so he could unify with Lopez and make Haney the all-around champion.
He has made two voluntary defenses so far with shutout wins and now passes the toughest test of his professional career in the form of veteran Jorge Linares.
Jorge Linares (47-5) at 35 is much more experienced than Haney but is far from the best. He won his first world title 14 years ago in 2007, but 3 stoppage losses in 7 fights temporarily derailed his race. He became a two-time champion in 2015 and managed 6 title defenses against top opponents such as Britons Luke Campbell and Anthony Crolla (x2).
He would then attempt to unify with P4P star Vasyl Lomachenko and, although lost by stoppage, proved his pedigree by dropping the Ukrainian in sixth and offering a 50/50 fight. Linares tried to move up to 140 but suffered a TKO loss in the first round and decided to stay at 135.
Linares has looked vulnerable throughout his career, suffering his 5 knockout losses and could very well be the perfect top 10 lightweight for Haney, as Haney could stop Linares and an impressive statement is in order after some disappointing performances.
Devin Haney vs Jorge Linares: May 29 on DAZN