Paul Wheeler talks to a teenage prodigy
‘I WAS IN SO MUCH PAIN AT THE DENTIST THAT I COULDN’T STOP MY EYES FROM WATERING!’ Devin Haney
When and why you started boxing:
I started at the age of seven. I’d been fighting a lot at school, so my dad took me to the gym to teach me a lesson, but I just fell in love with the sport straightaway.
Favourite all-time fighter:
I like a lot of the old fighters, like Charley Burley, Jersey Joe Walcott and, of course, Sugar Ray Robinson.
Best fight you’ve seen:
Lucas Matthysse vs John Molina Jnr is one of the best fights I’ve ever seen in person. It was a bloody war.
Personal career highlight:
Turning professional. From a young age that’s all I’d ever dreamed of doing.
As an amateur I fought a lot of great guys. As for the pros, it’s hard to say because I’m still climbing the ladder. The toughest sparring sessions I’ve ever had have been with Floyd Mayweather.
Best and worst attributes as a boxer:
My main strength is being able to think when I’m under pressure in the ring. As for weaknesses, I don’t want to say!
Always stay ready. Ever since I was little I’ve always been in the gym, so I ended up passing the guys who were initially better than me, because they didn’t train as much.
I love pizza and chicken wings. One of my favourite restaurants is the Boiling Crab. It’s got a lot of good seafood.
Best friends in boxing:
Darren Cunningham is my best friend. He’s signed to my promotional company [Devin Haney Promotions] and we live
‘MY TOUGHEST SPARRING HAS BEEN WITH MAYWEATHER’
together. He’s currently 6-0.
Other sportsman you would like to be:
I’d be a basketball player. Probably Lebron James because he’s a workaholic.
Last film/tv show you saw:
The last TV show I watched was
Have you ever been starstruck:
When I met [rap star] Jay-z. We spoke for a while, but I don’t remember a thing that was said because I was so starstruck!
Last time you cried:
When I went to the dentist recently. I was in so much pain that I couldn’t stop my eyes from watering!
Best advice received:
You can take something useful from every bit of advice you receive.
Worst rumour about yourself:
[Laughs] I can’t go around repeating bad rumours about myself!
Something not many people know about you:
I’m the king of [video game] NBA 2K.