Regis Prograis motivated by legacy ahead of Devin Haney fight

Regis Prograis has traveled a long-winded road as a professional boxer. 

In his mind, that journey hits its apex on Saturday, December 9, when he puts his WBC junior welterweight title on the line against Devin Haney at the Chase Center in San Francisco.

Prograis had only just started boxing aged 17 at the time Haney turned pro.

At a time in which Prograis and his life in New Orleans was displaced by Hurricane Katrine, Haney went on to forge a life for himself in Nevada where he would train amongst greats like Floyd Mayweather.

The journey Prograis traveled typically isn’t one of a pay-per-view headliner — and the fighter himself is very aware of this as well. He fought for little to no money for his first ten fights, yet is now dreaming of becoming a Hall-of-Fame boxer.

"This is the step to my legacy fight," said Prograis in a Matchroom Boxing video.

"Devin is looked at like kind of like a golden child. He turned pro when he was seventeen, I started boxing when I was seventeen. So, it’s a big difference right there, but I don’t have to be like them - I am going to be me.

"I was reading about boxing for so long," he said. "You can go in my library and all these great fighters, I read about them, I know about them. I know their life story. I just want to be like that — a hall-of-famer.

"I got so much will, and I got so much fight in me. It is what separates me from everybody else."

Prograis, who is a student of the game, is offended by the notion that Haney is the more skillful fighter.

Despite being the fighter with knockouts, Prograis insists that he has the same craft as legendary boxers, but his physicality and will are what people see instead.

A hidden story besides Prograis aiming for Canastota is simple … Prograis is looking to prove that he is one of the best of the era. To do so, he has to beat one of the fighters anointed as great in the modern era.

"Everyone is billing this as skills versus power," Prograis said. "No this is not going to be skills versus power. This is going to be skills versus skills, and of course, I can put out somebody, I have power, too, but I am [promoting this] as skills versus skills.

"So everybody saying I just have power I want to show people that is the plateau I got over."