Andre Ward wants Devin Haney to make San Francisco home

Andre Ward believes that Devin Haney should seek to continue fighting out of San Francisco.

Haney on Saturday challenges the WBC super lightweight champion Regis Prograis at the Chase Center – ultimately in the city of his birth.

He does so having most recently defended the undisputed lightweight title against Vasyl Lomachenko in Las Vegas, where despite being a long-term resident he was consistently booed.

The retired Ward – one of the finest fighters of the modern era – was also born in San Francisco and as a resident of Oakland regularly fought out of the Oracle Arena. 

Haney, 25, has spoken of exploring fighting in the city beyond the coming weekend, as well as of pursuing the riches on offer for fighting out of the Middle East, and of the former Ward told ProBox TV: “I think he should. I think it’s a beautiful thing. 

“It sounds like he’s sold a lot of tickets; I think it’s going to be a great night, and he’s got a really, really, really strong opponent – an opponent that I respect; I’ve got a lot of love for [Regis] Prograis – it’s a great match-up. I’m looking forward to it.”

Asked about Haney’s potential – if he beats the 34-year-old Prograis he will become a two-weight world champion but continue to be compared, possibly unfavourably, with Shakur Stevenson and Gervonta “Tank” Davis – he then responded: “He can be up there as an all-time great. He’s got all the makings; all the ingredients. 

“Now, a lot has to fall in place for all of these young fighters – Shakur; ‘Tank’; Haney – things have to fall in place for that to happen. But in terms of, do they have it? 

“Like the eye test; skill? They show more than enough for me to say that about all three of them.”