MGM GRAND, LAS VEGAS — After four years of chasing his white whale, Devin Haney finally caught the biggest win of his career: a close, unpopular unanimous decision over Vasiliy Lomachenko to retain his WBA (Super), WBC, IBF, WBO and Ring Magazine lightweight titles.
The sellout crowd of 14,436 fans at MGM Grand Garden weren't buying what "The Dream" was selling: that he's the best 135-pound fighter in the world.
"Lomachenko is a future Hall of Famer. It was a blessing. He was my toughest opponent by far. He is very crafty, and we put on a great fight for the fans," Haney (30-0, 15 KOs) said after retaining the WBA (Super), WBC, IBF, WBO and Ring Magazine lightweight titles.
This was a nip-and-tuck affair. Haney used bodywork and his jab to ward off Lomachenko's brilliant footwork and clean punching. In the end, the judges saw it in favor of Haney with scores of 116-112, 115-113 and 115-113. By the sound of the heavily pro-Lomachenko crowd, it was the wrong decision.
It was far from a robbery, though. Both fighters tried to impose their will. Lomachenko refused to fall victim to being a notoriously slow starter and pressed forward from the outset, but he had difficulty working around Haney's long jab and imposing size.
After a few rounds, Lomachenko had seemed to figure out the 24-year-old and darted in with straight right hands that landed clean and flush. He wouldn't allow the bigger fighter to bully him, and his age (35) wouldn't be a detriment.
But Haney refused to allow Lomachenko to gain a head of steam. He showed he would not be overwhelmed by the skill of arguably the greatest amateur boxer of all time. He bit down when necessary and wouldn't break when the Ukrainian attempted to apply pressure with combinations.
As close as the fight was, Lomachenko was incredibly strong in the 10th and 11th rounds. He appeared to stun Haney with right hands and snapped his head back with hard lead lefts. Again, Haney responded well beyond his years and was mentally tougher than anyone could have expected.
Haney now has options after this victory. He could stay at 135 pounds and accept the challenge of Shakur Stevenson. He could move up to 140, where Teofimo Lopez and Josh Taylor reside.
"This is all experience," Haney said. "Me and my team are going to go back to the house, watch the fight and reflect on it. I’ve been at 135 for a long, long time. This is my 30th fight. I’ve been here at 135 since I was 16 years old. We’re going to go back to the lab and figure out what’s next."
The loss was hard for Lomachenko to accept. "I don’t want to talk about [the decision]. All the people saw what happened today," he said. The Ukrainian doesn't believe Haney is deserving of being recognized as a pound-for-pound great.
"Before, I thought he would be better," he said. "He's a tough fighter. He's a good fighter. But he’s not a pound-for-pound fighter."
The Sporting News tracked live results and highlights from the card below.
Devin Haney vs. Vasiliy Lomachenko live results, updates
Devin Haney retains undisputed lightweight championship with close, controversial decision over Vasily Lomachenko
Scores: 116-112, 115-113, 115-113
Round 12: Everyone is on their feet. Hard left hand from Lomachenko and Haney responds with a counter. Loma backs him off with a left hand at the end of a combination. Lomachenko is a machine. Haney needs to go to work but Loma is the one bouncing a combination off his face. Hard right hook from Haney lands and they are firing away. More body shots from Haney. Hard left hook from Lomachenko backs Haney up. Twenty seconds left. Haney with a straight right. Ten seconds and they exchange big power shots. Haney may not have done enough.
SN Unofficial Scorecard: 10-9 Lomachenko (115-113 Lomachenko)
Round 11: Hard right hand lands flush for Lomachenko as Haney is backing up. Haney comes back with a counter right hand. Here comes Loma, though. Big uppercut from Haney and Loma comes rumbling in with hard right hands. Lomachenko lands a hard combination and has Haney on the ropes. Right hand just as Haney circles off. Combination. Hard left hand from Lomachenko. He's having a big round! Haney needs to answer because Loma is building momentum. Haney tries to answer but Loma blocks and backs off. If there was ever a clear round for either fighter, it was the 11th for Lomachenko.
SN Unofficial Scorecard: 10-9 Lomachenko (105-104 Lomachenko)
Round 10: Lomachenko with a big combination that lands flush and stuns Haney for a moment. Hard right hand from Haney behind the jab. Body shot from Haney lands again. They exchange hooks. Another one of these really close rounds where Loma doesn't do much but what he does do lands clean. It may not have been enough. Close one.
SN Unofficial Scorecard: 10-9 Haney (95-95)
Round 9: Haney popping the jab as Loma stays on the outside. Body shot from Haney gets a left hand receipt from Loma. Hard right hand from Loma down the middle moves Haney back. Loma with a big combination along the ropes. Straight left from Lomachenko lands clean. Body and head combination from Haney. Haney's body work has been impressive but it's not slowing Lomachenko down.
SN Unofficial Scorecard: 10-9 Lomachenko (86-85 Lomachenko)
Round 8: Left right combination by Loma catches Haney coming in. Haney body-checks Loma to the ground. Haney with a right hand that clips Loma but Loma walks in with three punches. Loma is doing his best work when Haney is backing up but Haney is attempting to hold his ground more. Hard right hand from Loma snaps Haney's head back. Haney with a right to the body.
SN Unofficial Scorecard: 10-9 Lomachenko (76-76)
Round 7: Two hard left hands from Lomachenko to open the round. Haney responds with a jab and a right hand over the top. Combination from Lomachenko lands. It's getting messy with the clinches. Haney with a hard right to the body. Big exchange. When Lomachenko lands, it's clean. Easy to score. Haney lands a big left hook that Loma walks into but Loma fires back with a 1-2 to close the round.
SN Unofficial Scorecard: 10-9 Lomachenko (67-66 Haney)
Round 6: Haney digging to the body with the left hook. Hard right hand from Lomachenko behind a beautiful feint. More body work from Haney and Loma responds with a big combination that ends with a right hand. Hard right to the body from Heaney and an uppercut. More banging on the inside by Haney. Tough round to score.
SN Unofficial Scorecard: Haney 10-9 (58-56 Haney)
Round 5: Haney moving forward and throwing. Loma slips a few but Haney lands a hard uppercut to the body. Double jab from Haney. Right hand from Haney. Loma with a lead left that lands flush. Big combination from Loma. Left uppercut from Haney. Right hand and Loma responds with a left. The pace is high. Haney banging away on the inside. Strong round for Haney behind the jab and body work.
SN Unofficial Scorecard: 10-9 Haney (48-47 Haney)
Round 4: Loma is finding his rhythm. Haney landing the right to the body by Loma slips and lands a left right and uppercut. Hard lead left hand from Lomachenko. Loma applying pressure on Haney. Haney catches Loma walking in with a right hand. Loma is unbothered and marches forward. They exchange left hands. They clinch and tumble to the canvas. Nice combination by Haney to close the round but it's a Loma round.
SN Unofficial Scorecard: 10-9 Lomachenko (38-38)
Three rounds in and we're wihessing chess at the highest level ♟️👑 pic.twitter.com/9uZSV5jW5x— Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) May 21, 2023
Round 3: Loma is trying to move around Haney's jab but is finding out it's not easy. Counter right from Haney grazes Loma. Lomaz to the body. Left hand from Lomachenko. Loma lands hard to the body. They exchange and both land crisp shots on the inside. Big hook from Haney and Loma responds with a right hand. Combination from Lomachenko. Haney lands a hard left hand.
SN Unofficial Scorecard: 10-9 Lomachenko (29-28 Haney)
Round 2: Jab from Haney lands. Loma looking to find his way inside and eats a hard right to the body. Loma rumbles in and catches a left hand. More jabs from Haney. Another body shot. Lomachenko can't find his way inside yet. Haney with a beautiful counter but Loma with a three-punch combination. Straight left from Loma. Counter left from Haney lands. Close round.
SN Unofficial Scorecard: 10-9 Haney (20-18 Haney)
Round 1: Haney looks big in there. Pushing forward and lands a left hand and a hook to the body. Dueling chants. Loma lands an uppercut. Haney range finding with the jab. They mix it up on the inside. Lomachenko's footwork is excellent. Haney goes to the body again. Loma advances but Haney lands a right hand. Flurry by Loma to close the round but not enough.
SN Unofficial Scorecard: 10-9 Haney
11:46 p.m. ET: Haney and Lomachenko have made their walks to the ring. Interestingly, Lomachenko was greeted with cheers while Haney was booed. Was it the push at the weigh-in that put it over the edge with fans? Will it affect the outcome? We are about to find out.
11:28 p.m. ET: It's time for the main event, Devin Haney vs. Vasiliy Lomachenko for the undisputed lightweight championship. We'll be going to round-by-round coverage from here on out.
Oscar Valdez tops Adam Lopez via decisive decision in rematch
Scores: 98-92, 98-91, 97-93
11:21 p.m. ET: A spirited effort from Lopez won't be enough to get him the victory. Valdez was too much of everything in this one. Rather than cruise to victory, Valdez went after the finish in the final round. An accidental clash of heads briefly dazed Lopez and Valdez went for the kill, throttling his foe with power shots. But Lopez wouldn't go down and made it to the final bell.
11:05 p.m. ET: After six rounds, Valdez is firmly in control. He's too strong and precise for Lopez. That isn't to say that Lopez hasn't had his moments with flurries of offense but Valdez is unbothered. Can Valdez earn another stoppage?
10:52 p.m. ET: Heading into the fourth round and we're seeing an entertaining fight. Lopez has made it clear that he's looking to prove his superiority with a relentless attack, but Lopez has stayed in the pocket and found success with a few well-placed counters. Valdez is ahead but Lopez is going to make him work for it.
10:38 p.m. ET: Oscar Valdez and Adam Lopez will run it back in the co-main event. It's a rematch from 2019 when Lopez stepped in on short notice, dropped Valdez but lost a controversial stoppage. Valdez makes his return after being shut out by Shakur Stevenson last year.
Raymond Muratalla destroys Jeremia Nakathila in two rounds
10:24 p.m. ET: Muratalla put on a power-punching clinic with his destruction of Nakathila. Muratalla became the first fighter to knock out Nakathila. His only other losses were by decision to Shakur Stevenson and Evgeny Chuprakov. That's a statement win.
9:54 p.m. ET: We're moments away from the PPV kicking off with Raymond Muratalla (17-0, 14 KOs) taking on Jeremia Nakathila (23-2, 19 KOs).
Junto Nakatani claims WBO junior bantamweight title with brutal 12th-round TKO of Andrew Moloney
9:45 p.m. ET: There was no need for this fight to keep going, but it did and then it ended in brutal fashion as Nakatani detonated a left hand to the chin that shut Moloney's lights off immediately. A definite Knockout of the Year contender from Nakatani.
9:39 p.m. ET: Heading into the final round, the only question is whether Moloney will see the final bell. Nakatani sent Moloney down again in the 11th with a left hand and the Aussie was slow to get up. Once again, Moloney proved to be too tough for his own good and weathered the storm. He needs a miracle to win but there's no denying his heart.
9:23 p.m. ET: We're in the eighth round and it's been all Nakatani thus far. Moloney has been a tough cookie and has hung in there despite the spurts of violence from Nakatani. At the very least, Moloney has stopped getting shredded by uppercuts.
9 p.m. ET. Things may be going downhill for Moloney in a hurry. Midway through the second, Nakatani caught Moloney coming in with a right uppercut that sent him down hard. Moloney survived the round but Nakatani was sharpshooting the rest of the round.
8:52 p.m. ET: Up next is Andrew Moloney (25-2, 16 KOs) vs. Junto Nakatani (24-0, 18 KOs) for the vacant WBO junior bantamweight world title.
Nico Ali Walsh and Danny Rosenberg end in a split draw
8:43 p.m. ET: Well, that wasn't the conclusion many expected but it was a just decision. Rosenberger really picked it up late and landed the cleaner shots while Ali Walsh was unable to gain momentum down the stretch. Back to the drawing board for Ali Walsh, who is now 8-0-1.
8:35 p.m. ET: OK, I spoke too soon. Rosenberger has turned this into an entertaining and competitive fight heading into the final round. Chances are he won't win, no matter what he does, but there will be curiosity about just how good Ali Walsh is.
8:24 p.m. ET: Heading into the fifth round, Ali Walsh is in control, but Rosenberger won't just roll over for him. He's overmatched but game. Ali Walsh continues to touch him with the jab and the occasional power shot while chasing him around the ring. Rosenberger has occasionally landed a clean hook or uppercut but it hasn't been enough at this point.
8:08 p.m. ET: We're kicking off the ESPN portion of the card with Nico Ali Walsh — grandson of the great Muhammad Ali — in pursuit of his ninth victory as a professional. Across the ring is Danny Rosenberger (13-9-4). Rosenberger isn't expected to give Ali Walsh too much resistance, but we'll see how this plays out.
How to watch Devin Haney vs. Vasiliy Lomachenko: TV channel, live stream
|Country||Date||Channel + Live Stream (main card)|
|United States||Sat. May 20||ESPN+ PPV|
|United Kingdom||Sun. May 21||Sky Sports|
|Australia||Sun. May 21||Main Event on Kayo|
The Haney vs. Lomachenko main card will air on ESPN+ PPV in the U.S., Sky Sports in the U.K., and Main Event on Kayo in Australia.
Devin Haney vs. Vasiliy Lomachenko PPV price: How much does the card cost?
The PPV price for Devin Haney vs. Vasiliy Lomachenko will be $59.99.
Fight fans will also pay $9.99 for a monthly subscription to ESPN+ or buy an annual subscription for $99.99.
|ESPN+ Monthly Subscription||$9.99/month|
|ESPN+ Annual Subscription||$99.99/year|
|The Disney Bundle w/Hulu Ad-Supported||$13.99/month|
|The Disney Bundle w/Hulu No-Ads||$19.99/month|
Devin Haney vs. Vasiliy Lomachenko results
- Devin Haney (c) def. Vasiliy Lomachenko via unanimous decision (116-112, 115-113, 115-113) for the undisputed lightweight title.
- Oscar Valdez def. Adam Lopez via unanimous decision (98-92, 98-91, 97-93).
- Raymond Muratalla def. Jeremia Nakathila via 2nd-round TKO (2:48).
- Junto Nakatani def. Andrew Moloney via 12th-round TKO (2:42) for the WBO super flyweight title.
- Nico Ali Walsh and Danny Rosenberger fight to a split draw (75-77, 77-75, 76-76).