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Floyd Mayweather training Devin Haney on mitts

Image: Floyd Mayweather training Devin Haney on mitts

By Charles Brun: Devin Haney posted some video of him working out on the mitts with boxing legend Floyd Mayweather Jr. on Wednesday during the lockdown. Like Mayweather, Haney is a pure 100% boxer with little in the way of punching power.

Mayweather will need to have Haney focus on his defense because he’s never going to possess the hand speed or punching power that we see from the top lightweights.

In looking at the mitt workout, Haney is considerably slower than Mayweather, even now with him 43-years-old. You can argue Haney trails the top four lightweights at 135 in the hand-speed department behind these fighters:

  1. Ryan Garcia – the fastest
  2. Teofimo Lopez
  3. Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis
  4. Vasily Lomachenko

Mayweather is trying to pass on some of the knowledge to the young Haney (24-0, 15 KOs), who was recently given back his WBC lightweight title by the World Boxing Council.

Haney, 21, had been injured with a shoulder problem and was stripped of his WBC belt.

Haney needs to be tested

Devin Haney has slowly been moving up against increasingly better opposition since 2017, but he still hasn’t faced a top five-level contender at 135. In Haney’s last match against Alfredo Santiago, he struggled at times with his height and punching power.

That was a closer fight than the judges handed down last September. They scored it to Haney by a one-sided 12 round unanimous by the scores 120-107 x3. Boxing News 24 had Haney winning 116-112. It was a decisive win on Haney’s part, but not by the lopsided scores the three judges handed in. Haney looked bothered by Santiago’s skills and size in that fight, and he never got untracked.

In working out with Mayweather, Haney looks good, but hitting mitts only tells you so much. To see whether Haney has improved, he’ll need to take on the lions in the 135-pound division like Ryan Garcia, Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis, Teofimo Lopez, and Vasily Lomachenko.

Those fights aren’t happening anytime soon, and it wouldn’t be surprising if Haney moves up to 140 soon without ever fighting any of them. IBF lightweight champion Teofimo Lopez (15-0, 12 KOs) called Haney out, but when there was little interest, he moved on and chose to face WBA/WBC/WBO champion Lomachenko in a much bigger fight for this September.

Haney’s promoter Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing, says he wants to match him against better fighters, but he’s not given any particulars about who that might be. With Haney growing fast, he’ll likely outgrow the 135-pound division by 2021, and he’ll need to move up to 140.

Image: Floyd Mayweather training Devin Haney on mitts

Devin running out of time at 135

If Hearn doesn’t start moving fast to put Haney in with the elite level lightweights by 2021, then he’ll probably miss the bus and be forced to move up to light-welterweight without fighting any of them.

If Haney moves up to 140, he’s going to have a difficult time getting the best guys to fight him. The reason for that is Top Rank Boxing has a stranglehold on the best fighters in the light-welterweight division. They hold the top spots with the following champions being promoted by Top Rank:

  • IBF/WBA – Josh Taylor
  • WBA/WBO – Jose Ramirez

Haney has said it himself that when he moves up to 140, he’s not going to be able to get those fighters to face him. Also, Ramirez and Taylor will be moving up to 147 soon to chase bigger paydays against WBO champion Terence Crawford. After Ramirez and Taylor abandon the 140-pound division, it’s going to be cleaned out of talented fighters.

The only guys left will be Regis Prograis, Ivan Baranchyk, and Mario Barrios. Those are not big stars, so Haney will be stuck fighting no names until Ryan Garcia, Teofimo, and Tank Davis move up to join him at 140.

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