Through Sean Jones: George Kambosos Jr. appeared to come in defense of Devin Haney on Wednesday in response to promoter Bob Arum who said Vasily Lomachenko is better known in Australia than Devin and would be a “bigger” match for the undisputed lightweight champion.
In response to Arum saying that Lomachenko is a more prominent name in Australia, Kambosos Jr. back to the wise promoter by saying that his fans are coming to see him, not Loma or Haney.
Whether this comment means Kambosos (20-0, 10 KOs) has chosen WBC lightweight champion Haney (27-0, 15 KOs) as his next opponent is unclear. But if Kambosos Jr. firing back at Arum as he did, you could quickly come to that conclusion.
Has Kambosos picked Haney yet?
If Kambosos and his promoter Lou DiBella have already made up their mind to take on Haney’s fight over Lomachenko (16-2, 11 KOs), it makes sense to build him up.
Haney is the easier and more winable battle of the two for Kambosos as he would likely lose to Lomachenko especially with the way he looked recently.
Given that Kambosos would be fighting in front of his own Australian fans, possibly in a 50% capacity stadium due to Australia’s COVID restrictions, you could understand why he would rather run into Haney than Lomachenko.
The way Lomachenko forces many of his opponents to quit, Kambosos could potentially be in a bad situation if he defended himself against the talented former three-division world champion Loma instead of taking on Haney, who is more of a light hit & run type spoiler.
The winner of the Kambosos vs. Haney fight would have the right to say they are the undisputed lightweight champion.
Kambosos responds to Arum
“Mr. Arum, with all due respect, they are not coming to see Haney or Lomachenko, they are coming to watch their Emperor return home with all the belts after boxing over Takeover. These belts are from Australia and Greece and they will need an army to get them off us,” Kambosos Jr. said. on Twitter.
Bragging rights for the Kambosos-Haney winner would be empty and superficial, as the knowledgeable hardcore boxing fans see Lomachenko as the #1 fighter in the division, not Haney and not Kambosos.
As such, the winner of a fight between Haney and Kambosos would have the undisputed championships, but they would not be considered the best. To be the best in the true sense and not on paper, the Kambosos vs. Haney winner beat these fighters:
- Vasily Lomachenko
- Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis
- Michelle Rivera
- Ryan Garcia
It is similar to the situation of Canelo Alvarez at the age of 168. He defeated a number of paper champions from England and another from Tennessee to go unchallenged. Still, he failed to fight against David Benavidez, widely recognized as the No. 1 fighter at the age of 168.
You could argue that fans who would be impressed if the Kambosos vs. Haney winner is recognized as the undisputed lightweight champion, people who are in the dark about Lomachenko’s existence.
In other words, casual fans would be impressed if the winner of the Kambosos vs. Haney fight with 135 is called the undisputed champion, but not by the hardcore fans who keep up with the sport.
Arum says “nobody knows” Haney
“Nobody knows who Devin Haney is in Australia,‘ said Arum to Fighthype. “Lomachenko would be a much bigger match in Australia than Devin Haney would be.”
“He [Haney] had no exposure. Anyone who follows boxing around the world, including Australia, knows Lomachenko,” said Arum.
I don’t know why Arum’s comments about Haney would prompt Kambosos to fire back at him about who the crowd is coming to see. Does Kambosos say Australian fans don’t prefer who he faces? Why wouldn’t they?
Fans from every country have preferences, don’t they? Are fans different in Australia? If I were Australian I would rather see Kambosos fight against the much more experienced and well known Lomachenko. He is a two-time Olympic gold medalist and a former world champion in three divisions.
Haney has only won one division title, and that was the one he got by email from the WBC. Haney did not win his WBC title in the ring.
Haney also did not win an Olympic gold medal. Heck, Haney never fought in the Olympics. The ONLY thing Haney has left for him is his WBC lightweight title which he has lifted beyond the ring. Aside from his WBC belt and his undefeated record, Haney doesn’t have much to offer to put him above Lomachenko.
Lomachenko is the best at 135, and you can also strongly argue that Michel Rivera and Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis would also make it easy with Kambosos and Haney.
Australia capping crowds at 50% capacity?
Kambosos’ boast about a stadium in Australia waiting to be filled for its next fight in April may need to be tempered with the reality of what is currently happening with the COVID restrictions.
Audience at the Australian Open was limited to 50% capacity due to COVID 19 restrictions for that country. Needless to say, if the 50% capacity restrictions apply to boxing fan stadiums in Australia, Kambosos may have to cut back on his boasting about the number of fans who will show up to watch him fight in his home country.
If the crowd in Australia is capped at 50%, it makes no sense for Haney or Lomachenko to travel there to fight Kambosos.
I wonder if Kambosos is aware of the rush at the Australian Open with a 50% cap. Assuming the crowds for stadiums are capped at 50%, it makes no sense for Haney or Lomachenko to fight there.
Unless large crowds are allowed in Australia, there’s no point in Haney or Lomachenko bothering to travel there to fight Kambosos. It would be better for Kambosos to take “those beautiful belts“If he goes to the United States to defend himself against one of those two.
The crowds in Australia don’t make that country the ideal place for Haney or Lomachenko to travel to for a fight with Kambosos.