SAN FRANCISCO – There were times Saturday night when Devin Haney was sure that if he pushed the issue he could’ve stopped Regis Prograis.

The new WBC super lightweight champion dropped Prograis with a right hand that landed in the third round. He also affected Prograis with punches later during a 12-round fight he completely controlled.

Bill Haney, Devin’s father and trainer, reminded him, however, what happened late in the 10th round of this victory over Jorge Linares 2½ years earlier.

Haney had outboxed Linares as well, but Linares landed a right hand that buzzed Haney just before the 10th round ended in May 2021. That taught Haney an invaluable lesson, even though he eventually recovered and won their 12-round, 135-pound championship bout by unanimous decision at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino’s Michelob ULTRA Arena.

Prograis was way behind by the 10th round and the only way he would’ve won is if Haney got “greedy” and the powerful southpaw clipped him with a shot Haney didn’t need to take. Haney (31-0, 15 KOs) explained why he didn’t push too hard for the knockout during his post-fight press conference.

“I wanted to fight,” Haney said. “I knew that I could hurt him and I knew that I was hurting him. But every round I went back to the corner, my dad would say, ‘Just stay focused. Stay sticking to the game plan. You’re beating him easy. Keep breaking him down.’ And that’s what I was doing. You know, and it comes with experience.

“In the Linares fight, I was breaking him down. He was going down fast, but I got too greedy and, you know, that’s when I got hit with a shot that I shouldn’t have got hit with. So, in this fight, you know, with the experience, you know, we just stuck to the game plan. And if the knockout was to come, then it was gonna come. But we didn’t wanna get too greedy.”

The gritty Prograis’ only previous loss was a majority-decision defeat to Josh Taylor in their 12-round, 140-pound title unification fight in October 2019 at O2 Arena in London.

Haney’s performance Saturday night was masterful. The former undisputed lightweight champion dominated a two-time 140-pound champion by dictating distance and pace, landing flush power punches on occasion and preventing Prograis from hitting him.

CompuBox counted only 38 connections overall for Prograis, which set a record low for 12-round title fights CompuBox has tracked.

Haney hasn’t recorded a knockout, though, since he stopped Russia’s Zaur Abdullaev after four one-sided rounds in September 2019 in The Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York. The WBC crowned Haney its interim lightweight champion for beating Abullaev, who was 11-0 when he fought Haney, and later elevated him to full champion status.

The 25-year-old Haney, of Henderson, Nevada, has won each of his last eight fights, all 12-rounders, by unanimous decision. He shut out Prograis (29-2, 24 KOs) by the same score, 120-107, on the cards of judges Rey Danesco, Mike Ross and Fernando Villarreal.

Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.