Devin Haney unlikely to fight Vasyl Lomachenko, says Paulie Malignaggi
By Sam Volz: Paulie Malignaggi still thinks Devin Haney is unlikely to fight Vasyl Lomachenko despite his “suspicious” performance against Jermaine Ortiz last Saturday night in New York.
After the fight, a VERY big Haney stepped into the ring to build hype for a fight against Lomachenko. Malignaggi thinks that with Haney’s huge size, which literally looked three divisions bigger than Lomachenkohe won’t make weight and there won’t be a fight.
Haney looked like a giant megalodon standing next to a small minnow fish when he stood opposite Lomachenko. The size difference between the two fighters was huge, making it impossible to imagine a fight between them.
How Haney gained weight for his last fight against George Kambosos Jr was just hard to know as Devin is clearly a true welterweight at this point in his career. Even 140 is too small for him with his build.
If Haney comes in too heavy, maybe ten pounds over the 135-pound limit, it’s likely the fight will be called off as it would make him a welterweight against a lightweight.
Another possibility is that Haney goes over the 135-pound limit by four or five pounds, and the belts will be taken away from him but available for Loma to win. Still, it will be tough for Lomachenlo to win, especially if Haney rehydrates in the mid-150s looking like a junior middleweight.
Ortiz (16-1-1, 8 KOs) gave former three-division world champion Lomachenko (17-2, 11 KOs) one of the toughest fights of his career in a fight Loma pulled out during championship rounds at Madison Square Garden. Lomachenko won by the scores of 116-112, 117-111 and 115-113.
Some boxing fans felt the fight should have been marked as a draw if not a win for Ortiz, but the apparent majority of fans on social media had Lomachenko winning due to his late second-half surge.
“He’s undersized for a lightweight, but he’s a guy to find competition, he’s fighting in a weight class that’s not comfortable for him,” Paulie Malignaggi said on Pauly TV about Vasily Lomachenko competing in a division where he is much smaller than his opponent.
“What is Devin Haney going to do?” Will he fight? I still think he’s not going to fight. He got in the ring last night. You are the undisputed lightweight champion right now, and you have every right to step into the ring.
“It doesn’t mean anything that Haney said he went to Australia [for George Kambosos Jr fight] and that he has accepted all the conditions. It means nothing to Lomachenko. Lomachenko had also agreed to all the terms and then he pulled out of the fight because Lomachenko went to war.
“When you have a very beatable champion in George Kambosos. It was clear he wasn’t going to be able to make the adjustments in the rematch [with Haney], and he was not. He had a good night against Teofimo Lopez.
“Lomachenko said last night that he was ready to give all financial compensation to Devin Haney in order to obtain this title. Is it just bluster because I believe Lomachenko is going to fight on very, very favorable terms for Haney financially?
“Haney, in many ways, deserves it because he went through a lot of the same things with Kambosos as he mentioned. But you can’t pretend it’s a way out for Lomachenko because Lomachenko was ready to do it against Kambosos as well, but he ended up pulling out of the fight.
“But you have to make it realistic because he’s a fighter [Lomachenko] won world titles in three different weight classes. You also need to understand who you are up against.
“Haney is the undisputed champion and Lomachenko is the top contender for that title. He’s also a guy who wants to fight and is ready to fight.
“Are we going to have Haney against Lomachenko? I said from the start that I didn’t think we were. I still think I don’t think we will.
“Based on the fact that Bill [Haney] was willing to bet he would take the fight but not win the fight, too made me think they had no intention of fighting.
“I only think it’s cool if you make the fight. Even Lomachenko mentioned that Devin is a big lightweight. I admit that it’s probably not easy to make Devin fat. Bill mentioned that as well.
“He is [Haney] been a lightweight for a long time. It’s a big advantage he has over Lomachenko if he can make the weight. Physically, you can see that Lomachenko is undersized, and it bothers him against some of these lightweights.
“What happens if it doesn’t happen? What if Haney goes up? Do Shakur and Loma take the vacant titles and fight? What ultimately happens in this fight?
“I think this fight is the angle they’re going to go to if Devin gains weight. I think Loma and Shakur will be looking to win the remaining titles. But I know how important undisputed titles are to Lomachenko.
“I think he’s going to do his best to make this fight. I think the Haneys are also going to try their best to make this fight or if they intend to make this fight because again if you can’t make the weight you can’t make the fight .
“But if you can’t gain weight why did you get in the ring last night [with Lomachenko]? That’s my thought.
“After the fight, Haney got in the ring. I don’t think Haney can make the lightweight division. Devin may not be able to make the weight, but you keep pushing that thing Lomachenko may be scared of you. Lomachenko is not afraid of you.
“If you keep chasing this and talking about it, you kind of have to fight. I don’t know where we’re going here ’cause the gist I got from Bill [Haney] was that her son couldn’t gain weight.
“The main thing that I understood was, ‘Oh, you know, he didn’t look healthy. Okay, so why are we having this discussion, guys? Why are we doing this? Either you are going to fight or you are not going to fight.
“You can tell Lomachenko looked a little suspicious last night, but a lot of that was because of Jermaine Ortiz, not because of Lomachenko. If Lomachenko is going to have a problem at lightweight, it’s because he is shorter than everyone else.
“Lomachenko is so good; he can’t even fight in his own weight class. He has to fight at a weight where he is clearly the smallest, and Haney is a big lightweight. He would have advantages if he led the fight and pushed the negotiations forward and took the fight.
“He would be even bigger than Ortiz. I don’t know if Haney would be able to use his physique that way. He’s not really a physical fighter. He is more of an athletic type fighter.
“Based on what happened last night, a lot more people are going to be watching Haney to win this fight based on how Lomachenko looked last night.
“But again, I give more credit to Jermaine Ortiz. Devin Haney is also a good fighter, but Jermaine Ortiz was doing some very peculiar things in this fight. There are certain restless moves that Jermain Ortiz does. When he gets close, he starts throwing a bunch of combinations with his hands.
“From the outside, he’s already giving you trouble with his hands. From the inside, he moves his hands and throws those combinations and puts you in the back a bit defensively, and supports some of the tricks that way.
“If his stamina held it would be better for him, but obviously he passed out late. Again, good performance from Jermaine Ortiz. Solid performance from Vasily Lomachenko. Is he fading?
“Is the lightweight division more problematic for Lomachenko as he has shown in the past? He gets those wins, but he’s not as dominant in those lightweight fights, and maybe he’s getting a little older.
“At featherweight and super featherweight, he was pretty dominant to the point that it wasn’t fun to watch him. It was just watching him throw punches at everyone, and he was also beating some really good fighters.
“At lightweight, the fights get a bit more competitive, I notice that,” Malignaggi said of Lomachenko.