Devin Haney is thrilled to have the chance to land the WBC Interim World Lightweight title when he faces Zaur Abdullaev at the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York on Friday September 13, live on DAZN in the US and on Sky Sports in the UK.
Haney (22-0 14 KOs) arrived in New York last night having finished training camp at home in Las Vegas, and has a spring in his step after his final eliminator clash with Abdullaev (11-0 7 KOs) was given added spice by the WBC adding the Interim title to the spoils.
Pound-for-pound star Vasiliy Lomachenko added the WBC strap to his WBA and WBO crowns with victory over Luke Campbell in London last weekend, and the winner next weekend will be in pole position to face the Ukrainian for the full title.
“The WBC Interim World Championship means a lot to me,” said Haney. “Some people kept labeling me a prospect when I knew I was so much more. Being able to fight for an Interim World title means everything. This not only makes me the WBC mandatory for Vasiliy Lomachenko, but I’m able to do Interim title defenses until Loma is ready to fight. I believe the winner of Haney vs Abdullaev is in a really good position with the WBC.
“I know Abdullaev is focused, he’s been at the top of the rankings for a while now, so I know he’s ready to fight. He’s an undefeated fighter, who has beaten some quality opposition, so I take him very seriously. I’m just very excited to face Abdullaev because it will show the world my skills and why I am the new face of the sport.
“Training camp has been great. We started strength and conditioning with Coach Reggie at Phase 1. I really got stronger and I can feel the difference. I spent the next portion of camp at the SNAC System facility in the Bay Area working with Victor Conte. There I worked on my speed and explosiveness with well renowned track coach Remi Korchemny. I’ve had a world class training camp, with everything from strength and conditioning, to tremendous sparring, included with a lot of rest and recovery. This will be another memorable performance like my last fight on DAZN.”
Haney’s clash with Abdullaev is part of a huge night of action as record-breaking seven-weight World champion Amanda Serrano challenges WBO World Featherweight champion Heather Hardy in an all-Brooklyn affair, brought to you by DiBella Entertainment in association with Matchroom Boxing USA.
Serrano (36-1-1 27 KOs) conquered her seventh weight class at the Hulu Theater in title in January when the Puerto Rican destroyed Eva Voraberger inside the opening round to claim the vacant WBO Super-Flyweight title.
Serrano held the WBO Featherweight strap in 2016 before vacating it then her sister Cindy picked it up later that year. Hardy (22-0 4 KOs) was next in line to win the vacant title in October in a rematch against Shelley Vincent in the Hulu Theater. Hardy put boxing on hold to return to MMA in June with an outing at Bellator 222 at Madison Square Garden but returns to boxing to go head-to-head with her fellow Brooklynite.
The Heavyweight landscape remains a hot one and there’s a great 50-50 clash on the card as Michael Hunter challenges Sergey Kuzmin for the WBA Intercontinental title. Hunter (17-1 12 KOs) holds the International strap with the WBA having KO’d Alexander Ustinov in Monte Carlo in November and defended that with a second round KO of Fabio Maldonado in Maryland in May. The 31 year old is rapidly rising in the rankings and can take a huge leap towards World title action with a win but faces a crunch challenge in the form of Kuzmin (15-0 11 KOs).
The unbeaten Russian puts the strap he won at Wembley Stadium in London in September against David Price and first saw off LaRon Mitchell and then Joey Dawejko in successful Stateside defenses. With Kuzmin ranked #5 and Hunter #8 with the WBA, the victor in New York will be knocking on the door for a title shot, raising the stakes in this pick’em match-up, in association with World of Boxing.