Devin Haney and Regis Prograis have agreed to a highly anticipated fight for Prograis’ WBC junior welterweight title. The 140-pound matchup is scheduled to take place on October 28 in Las Vegas.
Haney, who is 24 years old, previously defended his undisputed lightweight championship by defeating Vasiliy Lomachenko through a unanimous decision in May. This bout marked the conclusion of Haney’s three-fight deal with Top Rank.
Subsequently, Haney (30-0, 15 KOs) will return to Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing, the promoter for six of his fights on DAZN.
ESPN ranks Haney as the No. 9 pound-for-pound boxer globally, and his pay-per-view headline debut against Lomachenko was considered a career-best win. And at the moment, Haney holds the WBA, WBC, WBO, and IBF titles at 135 pounds.
For his debut at 140 pounds, Haney will face a formidable southpaw puncher in Regis Prograis, who is currently ESPN’s No. 3-rated junior welterweight.
Prograis, a 34-year-old boxer from New Orleans, became a two-time champion at 140 pounds by defeating Jose Zepeda via an 11th-round knockout in November. Following this victory, Prograis (29-1, 24 KOs) signed a three-fight deal with Matchroom Boxing and defended his title with a split decision win against Danielito Zorrilla in a homecoming bout.
Prograis’s only professional defeat occurred in October 2019 when he faced Josh Taylor in a title unification fight in London, losing via majority decision. However, he bounced back with four consecutive TKO victories.
With a win over Prograis, Haney could position himself as a top contender for Fighter of the Year honors, solidifying his status as one of the best fighters in the sport.
Haney vs Prograis odds
Via Oddschecker, Paddy Power and betfair have Devon Hanely 1/4 (or -400), Regis Prograis 3/1 (+300) with a draw at 16/1 (+1600). Hence, a successful $100 wager on Haney would earn $25 while the same winning bet on Prograis would net $300. Of course, a successful bet on a draw would garner $1600.
Why Haney is the favorite?
He looked absolutely brilliant defeating George Kambosos in back-to-back bouts in 2022 and down deep to overcome a strong challenge earlier this year from Vasyl Lomachenko, arguably one of the best to have ever laced them up. And while he struggled a bit, defeating the awesome Lomachenko is nothing to sneeze at.
…And he’s just 24 and will get better.
The 34-year-old Prograis is a great fighter as well but doesn’t have quite the skills, athleticism, or boxing brilliance Haney boasts. Prograis is sensational but Haney, even at 140, will be a little better than sensational. And again, the latter is fresh off a win over Lomachenko in an awesome fight while Regis banged out a split decision in his last dust-up in June against Danielito Zorrilla (then 17-1).
Team Haney has likely seen that fight – and maybe a few times – and is confident they see flaws in Prograis they can expose.
However, Prograis’s size will be an advantage for him as Haney is moving up in weight and has never faced anyone as big or as strong as Prograis. Moreover, not everyone thinks Haney should be the favorite.
According to former world champion Sergio Mora, Regis Prograis has the advantage over Devin Haney. Just prior to Prograis’ split decision in June, Mora insisted Prograis’s natural size and strength as a 140-pound fighter would give him the edge.
Mora also highlighted Prograis’ attributes, calling him a smart and strong southpaw with power, and noted his previous four straight wins by knockout since his defeat to Josh Taylor in 2019. Mora believes that Prograis’ power would be a deciding factor in a fight against Haney, especially since Haney has been “shook” at 135 pounds.
He compares Haney’s close fight with Lomachenko, who is a smaller and older fighter moving up in weight, to how Haney might fare against Prograis at 140 pounds, considering the size and power difference.
Mora dismisses the idea that moving up in weight is Haney’s way of avoiding Shakur Stevenson, explaining that Stevenson’s style is challenging for everyone. Instead, he emphasizes that Prograis, with his fractured belts at 140 pounds, is a formidable opponent and a “monster” in the division.
Mora also pointed out that moving up in weight doesn’t make one’s chin stronger, and facing bigger punchers at a higher weight class poses challenges in terms of punch resistance.
Of course, Prograis’s power can only rise to the fore IF he can find the target.
Who should be the favorite in Haney vs Prograis?