NORTH HOLLYWOOD, Calif. – Regis Prograis has officially kicked off training camp as he gets ready to defend his WBC super welterweight title against Devin Haney.
The undisputed lightweight champion Haney (30-0, 15 KOs) will be moving up to 140 pounds to fight the two-time champion Prograis (29-1, 24 KOs).
Prograis, fresh off a four-mile run on Thursday, said he’s signed on to fight Haney on Dec. 9 in San Francisco on DAZN. The Matchroom Boxing-promoted event has not officially been announced yet.
“I'm training for Dec. 9. I've been training for this. First, the date was supposed to be Oct. 28, then I signed for Nov. 11, and now they say Dec. 9 is the date. I've been locked in ever since. I'm just ready,” Prograis told BoxingScene.com in an interview.
The Houston and New Orleans-based Prograis will be holding a training camp in the Los Angeles area at the Brickhouse Boxing Club with new coach Julian Chua.
Chua and Prograis worked together for the first time for a brief stretch earlier this year as Prograis prepared for his June fight against Danielito Zorrilla.
Longtime Prograis trainer Bobby Benton will also join the team later in camp.
The 34-year-old, 11-year professional fighter Prograis said he's been long overdue for this sizable opportunity.
“I'm a two-time world champion and I don't get the recognition I deserve. But this fight is going to put me on the map where I belong,” said Prograis. “My road has never been easy. It's always been kind of bumpy.”
Prograis first became a world titlist in 2019 but lost his belt in a fight of the year contender against Josh Taylor that same year.
Prograis regained a version of the 140-pound crown last November with an 11th-round stoppage win against Jose Zepeda and he defended his title in June for the first time, albeit with a lackluster split decision victory against Zorrilla.
Prograis realizes that a resounding winning performance against Haney will lead to a major breakthrough because suddenly, potential fights against the likes of Gervonta Davis, Teofimo Lopez Jr. and Ryan Garcia could be ever closer to becoming a reality.
“I feel like I am on the verge of superstardom,” said Prograis. “I am going to show up and show out on December 9.”
Manouk Akopyan is a sports journalist, writer, and broadcast reporter. He’s also a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and the MMA Journalists Association. He can be reached on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan, through email at manouk[dot]akopyan[at]gmail.com, or via www.ManoukAkopyan.com.