Devin Haney’s next fight, a defence of his undisputed lightweight championship against Vasiliy Lomachenko, is “essentially made,” promoter Bob Arum tells Sky Sports.
In a superlative 2022, unbeaten American star Haney has twice defeated George Kambosos in Australia, unifying all four of the major lightweight titles in their first bout then defending his undisputed crown.
However former lightweight champion Lomachenko returned to action in October, after serving in Ukraine when Russia invaded his country earlier this year.
Lomachenko beat Jamaine Ortiz in an exciting 12-round clash at Madison Square Garden to re-establish himself now as one of the leading contenders in the 135lb division.
Top Rank promoter Bob Arum revealed that Haney vs Lomachenko will happen in 2023.
“That fight is essentially made. We’re looking for the site and the date and that’ll be announced shortly,” Arum told Sky Sports. “I had lunch with Bill Haney, Devin’s father and Devin joined us and they’re all ready.
“They’re lovely people. That fight will happen either before or right after Ramadan. Because Devin is a religious Muslim and so we can’t do it during Ramadan but we could do it before or after. So I discussed all of that with the Haneys,” Arum continued.
“But they’re on board for the fight.”
There are exciting fights to be made in that weight class, with Shakur Stevenson moving up to 135lbs in 2023 as well.
“There are a lot of good young fighters,” Arum noted. “All really good lightweights. The lightweight division is alive and well.”
Haney though is big for the weight and he is expected to move up to 140lbs after his bout with Lomachenko.
Arum thinks he could go straight into a super-lightweight fight with Teofimo Lopez, the man who famously upset Lomachenko in 2020.
“Regis Prograis is a possibility [for Lopez]. There are other possibilities for Teofimo. One of the things is for him to take another fight and, if Haney beats Lomachenko, have Haney fight Teofimo in a non-title fight. That would be a big fight. So there are a lot of ways to go with these guys,” Arum explained.
With Tyson Fury close to finalising his heavyweight showdown with Oleksandr Usyk, Top Rank are already involved in another major undisputed title fight that’s in the process of being set for next year.
“As good a year as 2022 has been,” Arum said, “I think 2023 is going to be better.”