Unbeaten Haney returns after a year off to dominate Cuba’s Gamboa
Undefeated Devin Haney easily beat former titleholder Yuriorkis Gamboa by a unanimous decision on Saturday night to defend his World Boxing Council lightweight belt in Florida.
Haney, who was fighting for the first time since last November after having shoulder surgery, cruised to victory over Cuba’s Gamboa in the 12-round bout.
Two judges gave the 21-year-old Haney majority points for every round while the other judge had Haney winning all the rounds except for two.
Because of the global pandemic, which has gripped the US for the past seven months killing over 230,000 Americans, no spectators were allowed inside the Hard Rock Hotel in Hollywood, Florida.
Haney improved to 25-0 with 15 knockouts while Gamboa lost his second straight bout to drop to 30-3 with 18 KOs.
Haney underwent shoulder surgery in Los Angeles in January after beating Dominican challenger Alfredo Santiago two months earlier.
The 38-year-old Gamboa looked Saturday to be in the twilight of his boxing career which at one time included winning a gold medal at the 2004 Olympics.
Gamboa’s best rounds were early in the fight as he appeared to tire late, spending more time clinching in the ring than throwing any meaningful punches.
Haney rocked Gamboa with several solid jabs and left hooks but was unable to get the knockout.
He had been hoping to score an impressive victory so he could land a shot at a unification showdown with unbeaten Teofimo Lopez who holds all the other major word titles in the 135-pound division.
Three weeks ago Lopez boosted his record to 16-0 after defeating Ukraine’s Vasyl Lomachenko.