Can Devin Haney Boost His Star Power? Style Change Needed for Stardom

By Robert Segal - 02/11/2024 - Comments

WBC light welterweight champion Devin Haney must fight more entertainingly against Ryan Garcia if he wants his stock to rise after their headliner on April 20th on DAZN.

If there was ever a fight where Haney needed to go all out to change his fighting style, this was the one against Ryan.

Dull Performances, Dwindling Numbers

Haney’s last fight against Regis Prograis pulled in an abysmal 50K PPV buys on DAZN, and he fights in a dull safety-first manner against Ryan (24-1, 20 KOs). It’s possible we could see Devin’s numbers dropping to 30K buys for future fights.

When the PPV buy totals get that low for Haney, his promoters likely won’t bother putting him behind a paywall, seeing that they would know that that won’t bring in money and it will limit his exposure to boxing fans who have never seen him fight.

Haney’s technical, defense-oriented style, which he appears to have copied from Shakur Stevenson, is box office poison for him in terms of selling tickets and luring viewers into purchasing his fights on PPV.

Eddie Hearn’s Optimism

“It’s the perfect fight for Devin, the perfect fight for DAZN. We’ll find out if it’s the perfect fight for Ryan Garcia,” said Eddie Hearn to Boxing Social about the officially announced fight between Devin Haney and Ryan Garcia for April 20th.

“Fair play to him, he stepped up. These are the kinds of fights you want. Two young stars of the sport, and Devin Haney is fast becoming the ‘Face of Boxing,'” Hearn continued.

“Look at what he’s achieved and what he’s doing. Obviously, they had a face-to-face yesterday that spilled out of hand. They didn’t just randomly bump into each other at the car park. It was a planned face-to-face.

“It’s going to be a huge build-up. It’s going to do huge numbers. On April 20th, I think it’s going to be one of the fights of the year. It’s a tremendous fight. That’s why I say he’s [Haney] becoming the ‘Face of Boxing.’

Free Agency Looms for Haney

“Obviously, we’re involved in this fight, and then after that, he’s a free agent again and then you’ll see,” said Hearn about Haney, who is signed with Matchroom for his clash against Ryan Garcia on April 20th, but then will be a free agent afterwards.

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