Boxing analyst Tim Bradley believes Ryan Garcia exploited his weight advantage as a tool to defeat heavy favorite Devin Haney last Saturday night.

Bradley notes that Ryan (25-1, 20 KOs) never even attempted to make the contracted weight of 140 lbs at last Friday’s weigh-in. He came in 3.2 lbs over the limit at 143.2 lbs.

Bradley feels that Ryan’s extra weight gave him an advantage because he didn’t have to drain himself the way Haney did (31-1, 15 Kos), who did make weight at 140 lbs.

Some fans feel that Bradley can’t admit that he got it wrong, considering that he’d picked Haney to win, and felt that Ryan wasn’t mentally ready for this fight. Bradley even said that he might stop commentating if Ryan won.

Garcia’s Overweight Advantage

“What he learned from Gervonta Davis [fight], he took it into Devin Haney. People say, ‘Haney took the money.’ He had to because he was damned if he do, damned if he don’t. He had to because this was a huge event. You pull away, and you are going to anger a lot of folks,” said boxing analyst Tim Bradley to the Sean Zittel YouTube channel, discussing Ryan Garcia’s win over Devin Haney.

“If it’s only 3.2 lbs, why wasn’t it attempted to be made? Why didn’t Ryan Garcia attempt to make the weight?” said Bradley about Ryan Garcia coming in overweight at the weigh-in last Friday at 143.2 lbs instead of 140.”

Ryan said he tried to make the weight, but he gave up late at night when he couldn’t lose the remaining pounds. He wanted to make weight, as he’d bet Hane $500,000 per pound. It ended up costing Ryan $1.5 million. So obviously, this wasn’t a planned move on Ryan’s part because if it was, he wouldn’t have agreed to the bet.

“He said it in a Tweet, ‘I don’t want to drain myself,” said Bradley about Ryan. “I want to be physically strong for the fight.’ Well, guess who drained himself to make the weight? Devin ‘The Dream’ Haney. Now, it’s not Ryan’s fault. He didn’t even attempt to make the weight.

“So, Ryan went into this fight with an advantage. Everything we [the media] say in the lead-up to this fight, we don’t know he’s not planning to make weight. We’re not banking on that. We’re banking on skill for skill. Their last performances.”

Again, Ryan says he tried to make the weight, but when it was obvious that he wasn’t going to be able to shed the last three lbs, he gave up and chose to pay Haney the $1.5 million.

I don’t think the weight gave Ryan an unfair advantage in this fight. What gave him an advantage was his speed and power, and the fact that Haney’s punch resistance hasn’t been the same since being hurt numerous times in his fight against Jorge Linares in 2021. Haney’s ability to take a punch has been weak since then, with him getting hurt by Joseph ‘JoJo’ Diaz and Vasily Lomachenko.

The Importance of Fair Play

“I just want to elaborate on that. Ryan Garcia had an advantage. It wasn’t an even playing field here. Devin Haney acted like a true professional all the way through. He made his contracted weight,” said Bradley. “Understand that. Garcia didn’t and it helped him in this fight.

“Haney isn’t a big puncher, but he’s a respectable puncher, but he [Ryan] was walking through his stuff like it was nothing. Every shot Ryan threw, it buckled Haney. Even when it was a grazing blow, it buckled him. But I tell you right now, it’ll be different.”

Ryan was walking through Haney’s shots because his legs were gone after being hurt in the first round. After getting nailed by a left hook from Ryan in round one, Haney’s legs looked rubbery, and he didn’t have a strong foundation.

What further sapped Haney’s power was that he was on the outside, and diving in to clinch. He wasn’t sitting down on his punches because he was so afraid of being clipped again by one of Ryan’s powerful left hooks.

“If three pounds isn’t much, why didn’t Ryan attempt to make it?” said Bradley, sounding like a conspiracy theorist. “It would have weakened his resolve. There’s no doubt in my mind. Now, you’ve got an even playing field. Now, it’s a little bit different. Now, it would have taken something away from his punching power that he [Ryan] had because he looked heavy.”

The way that Ryan was punching, he would have been strong even if he had lost the 3.2 lbs to make weight last Friday. Haney would have been knocked out in the seventh round if not for referee Harvey Dock stopping the action to take a point away from Ryan for hitting on the break.

Questioning Garcia’s Win

“People say, ‘Haney gets up to 165 lbs.’ That’s blown up. That’s a ton of sodium and water retention,” said Bradley. “He’s not making his weight properly. You have Ryan. He had maybe three more pounds on him. He looked so dense and so big in that fight with Haney.”

Haney has been looking huge for his fights since his two fights against George Kambosos Jr. in 2022. That has nothing with sodium retention and more to do with him being a guy that should be fighting at welterweight instead of 140.

“Haney looked like a small guy. Usually, Haney is the bigger guy. He was small compared to Ryan Garcia,” said Bradley. “So, that’s what he had in his favor. So, I look it and think, ‘What kind of credit do you give Ryan?’”

Haney looked just as big as Ryan last Saturday. The only difference was Ryan was a little taller at 5’10” than him. You got to give Ryan credit for the win because he knocked Haney down three times [six times if you count the three non-calls in the seventh].

“How much credit do you give him when he had an advantage going into the fight?” said Bradley. “You had a contracted weight that you knew you weren’t going to make. In that case, you should have made the fight at 143 with no belt attached to the fight, but he didn’t.

“That would have helped Haney in this bout. It would have helped him absorb the shots Ryan was throwing and landing,” said Bradley.

YouTube video


Read the full article here