By: Hans Themistode
Devin Haney was beginning to lose hope.
With the 22-year-old WBC lightweight champion calling for showdowns against the top names in his division, it seemed more and more likely that his next ring appearance would be against an unworthy foe. However, with Ryan Garcia forced to withdraw from his showdown against Joseph Diaz due to surgery on his right wrist, Haney saw it as an opportunity.
After huddling up with promoter Eddie Hearn, the pair reached an agreement with Diaz to face Haney instead. The pair will now square off on December 4th, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Though on paper, Diaz appears to be the most arduous task of Haney’s title reign, the Las Vegas, resident believes he couldn’t have asked for a more favorable matchup.
“At the end of the day, skills pay the bills,” said Haney during their joint press conference. “I feel like his style will be tailor-made for me.”
Haney’s overwhelming confidence with how his showdown against Diaz will shake out mostly stems from how the early portion of his career has gone thus far. Though Haney is barely of drinking age, he’s gone on to dominate the competition. Most recently, Haney picked up the most impressive win of his career, a 12 round unanimous decision over former multiple division champion, Jorge Linares.
Diaz, on the other hand, isn’t unnerved by what he’s up against. With wins over Tevin Farmer and Javier Fortuna, the 28-year-old is convinced that he’s in the prime of his career. In the mind of Haney, however, Diaz being in his prime is extraneous.
As the WBC belt holder takes a long, strong look at the skillset of his upcoming opponent, he simply doesn’t see where Diaz holds an edge in any department.
“There’s nothing he can do to win. He can’t outbox me, I will show him that he can’t out bang me. I have all the tools to win.”
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