Regis Prograis vs. Devin Haney: Is this PPV worthy?

09/13/2023 - By Jeff Sorby - Comments

Fans aren’t too happy after learning that the Regis Prograis vs. Devin Haney fight will be shown on DAZN PPV on December 9th because many of them don’t feel this is a pay-per-view-worthy fight.

Boxing fans are already paying $240 for their yearly subscription rate for DAZN, and they feel that fights like Prograis-Haney should be part of what they already pay for.

Being asked to pay an additional $60 or $70 to watch this fight is a bit much and going too far for many. The fight still isn’t official yet, and the only reports of it being a done deal were released by Mike Coppinger, who may have jumped the gun.

Prograis,  34, isn’t a PPV fighter, as he’s only beaten one note-worthy fighter during his career, and he arguably lost his last fight against Danielito Zorrilla last June.

For his part, the undisputed lightweight champion Haney’s best win was a controversial decision over Vasily Lomachenko last May. That was a loss in the eyes of many fans.

Before that, Haney’s best true win was against 35-year-old Jorge Linares, and he was hurt several times by the former three-division world champion.

Haney was forced to clinch to survive in the championship rounds because seemingly every time Linares would land, he would stagger him.

Is Prograis vs. Haney  PPV worthy?

“Regis made his own announcement on social media. It’s got to be maybe a month ago or something close to that he was ready to go. So, don’t think there’s any issue on the Regis side of things,” said Dan Rafael to Boxing Social on the Regis Prograisvs. Devin Haney fight.

“It’ll probably get done, though. Also, one other thing. There was some difference of opinion among the Haney camp about whether this fight should go on DAZN pay-per-view or regular DAZN.

“So, that has been a point of discussion between the two sides. I’m not sure if it’s been 100% worked out. I would say this. If they’re going to put that [Haney vs. Prograis] on pay-per-view,  it’s a very good fight, but should be paying an extra sixty bucks for it or 70 bucks for it?

“I mean, why do I pay $240 a year on DAZN? To get fights like that,” said Rafael.

Matchroom wants assurances

“Regis is with Matchroom, signed with Matchroom,” said Rafael. “That was part of the game plan, and he was happy with his deal. Devin Haney, it’s a little more tricky because he’s not signed with Matchroom.”

You can understand why Matchroom wants a rematch clause because they just paid a bunch of money to Prograis to sign him, believing at the time that he’s the #1 fighter in the 140-lb division.

If Prograis gets beaten in the second fight of his contract by Haney, they don’t want to be stuck with a belt-less fighter who isn’t young enough to work his way to another title shot, and he’ll be useless to Matchroom.

Haney will be the favorite against Prograis because he’s a limited fighter, who struggles against boxers. If this Gary Antuanne Russell, Subriel Matias, Arnold Barboza Jr. or Richardson Hitchins, a rematch clause wouldn’t be quite as important because Haney would have a lot of problems against those fighters.

“My understanding is that at least at one point, Devin wanted this to be a one-off type of situation,” said Rafael. “Understandably, if you’re Matchroom Boxing, if you put in Regis Prograis, a champion in the 140-lb weight class that you signed to a long-term, you don’t want to put him in with Devin Haney and have Haney win the fight and then walk wherever he wants to go.

“They want some assurances that you’re going to have a future fight. Not necessarily for a Prograis rematch, but for some other event that you do with him. So, I think that might have been one of the issues,” Rafael said.

Prograis-Haney NOT a done deal

“There’s a lot of the ‘as usual,’ this being boxing today, there was a lot of premature reporting that the [Prograis vs. Haney] deal was done, that this date was set, that this location was set. It’s going to be this, it’s going to be that,” said Rafael.

It would have been better for Coppinger to hold off and wait for DAZN & Matchroom to be the one that announced the Prograis-Haney fight because Prograis has already said it’s not a done deal.

Fans will know for sure if the fight will be on PPV or not when DAZN/Matchroom announces it. If Prograis vs. Haney is going to be on pay-per-view, they need to stack the undercard because this isn’t a good enough fight to ask fans to pay to see it.

If Haney was fighting Teofimo Lopez or Ryan Garcia, that what be PPV-worthy, but not 35-year-old Prograis, who looked shot to pieces in his last fight against Zorrilla.

“All of those things are possible, but none of them were done. Remember, originally, they were thinking October the 28th and they ran into some problems.

“Rightlfy, from my understanding, Haney was going, ‘Why are we going on the same day as Tyson Fury against Francis Ngannou, which is a pay-per-view, which is maybe not going to start at the same time because one is in America and one is in the Middle East.

“In terms of the fan attention and the media attention and just the oxygen around the event, yours is going to get pushed aside because no matter whether you think Fury vs. Ngannou is a freak show, it’s still going to command more attention than Haney-Prograis, which is a good fight, but it doesn’t have that mainstream appeal or interest or have people look because it’s this weird hybrid kind of fight.

“So they were smart to move that off. Again, nothing is 100%. I’ve been checking in with Matchroom practically on a daily basis, and they’re working on it. What the final reasons are for why it hasn’t been announced?

“Obviously, I always remember back in the day when Richard Schaefer was the CEO of Golden Boy, and I would talk to Richard on a regular basis. I remember back then, they would work with all the Al Haymon fighters.

“They would be working on a whole bunch of fights. Richard’s greatest same line. I can still hear it ringing in my ear. ‘Dan, a done deal is a signed deal,’ and it’s not signed until it’s not done,” said Rafael.