Speaking on 78SPORTSTV’s YouTube channel, the undefeated lightweight boxer made the comments after being asked about fighting Ukrainian unified lightweight world champion Vasyl Lomachenko.
“I can tell you this — I will never lose to a white boy in my life,” the 21-year-old said.
“I don’t care what nobody got to say. Listen, can’t no white boy beat me, I don’t care, on any day of the week. I fight a white boy like 10 times, I’m gonna beat him 10 times.”
Haney was widely criticized on social media for his comments. Fellow American lightweight Ryan Garcia tweeted: “We should all respect everyone from every race and see who the best man is! I respect Devin Haney and I believe he didn’t mean this with Racist intent but let’s all respect each other for the love of the sport.”
Lou DiBella, president of boxing events firm DiBella Entertainment, tweeted that he did not think Haney intended to be hateful, but that boxing can do without “racial s**t.”
Boxing promoter Michelle Rosado said on Twitter, “Imagine a white or Hispanic fighter saying what Haney said, but about black fighters. The double standards are real and disgusting. There’s no room for any it. It’s uncalled for.”
Haney later posted twice on Twitter.
“I’m not racist and I never will be a racist. I’m chasing greatness,” he said in his first post.
He then posted: “I just had a very positive conversation with Mauricio Sulaiman, president of the WBC, and confirmed to him directly my commitment to be a role model and my absolute rejection of discrimination of any kind.”
Haney is a former WBC lightweight champion. He successfully defended the title against Alfredo Santiago in November 2019 but suffered a shoulder injury in the fight and was later declared “champion in recess.”
During his recovery, he has been calling for a fight with Lomachenko — No.2 ranked pound-for-pound boxer by The Ring — and the UK’s Luke Campbell.