Ryan Garcia honors $1.5M bet with Devin Haney after missing weight by over 3 pounds

Both camps came to an agreement to go forward with the fight but without a title on the line.

Boxers Devin Haney and Ryan Garcia
Devin Haney and Ryan Garcia face-off at The Empire State Building on April 16, 2024 in New York City. (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images for Empire State Realty Trust)

Ryan Garcia (24-1, 20 KOs) failed to make weight for his scheduled bout against Devin Haney (31-0, 16 KOs) for the 140-pound super lightweight title Saturday in New York.

Garcia came in 3.2 pounds overweight, forcing both camps to negotiate a deal that would allow the fight to go forward, but as a non-title bout.

“Ryan has weighed in over his contractual weight," said a statement from Golden Boy Promotions. "He will honor the handshake made at the final press conference yesterday. We have a fight.”

The handshake was a $500,000 bet between the fighters for every pound Garcia came in over the 140-pound super lightweight limit. Haney also posted on X that Garcia did honor the bet.

Garcia appeared to lean into the error during the ceremonial weigh-in, jumping onto the scale and chugging what appeared to be a beer. He later claimed on social media that it was apple juice and sparkling water, after telling DAZN's Ariel Helwani it was indeed beer.

As he was interviewed about missing weight, Garcia yelled "suck my d***" at the crowd and promised to still knock out Haney.

The bet was an almost entirely self-inflicted wound for Garcia, who boisterously proposed a $500,000 wager out of nowhere during the fighters' news conference Thursday. Haney, sensing an opportunity, countered by upping it to $500,000 per pound. The two fighters shook on the deal, despite Garcia's father trying to kill the deal from the sidelines. Garcia proceeded to graphically proposition Haney's mother.

"Something is wrong with this mother f***er," Haney said, as Garcia laughed. "Something is wrong with him. This s*** is not normal."

The whole incident, which you can watch here with a graphic language warning, was thoroughly in character for Garcia, who never shies away from an opportunity to grab attention, be it good or bad, as Yahoo Sports' Ben Fowlkes explained Friday:

Over the past couple months, Garcia’s behavior has been erratic to say the least. He has used his social media to rant about the Illuminati and aliens, while also insisting at times that his phone and social media access had been taken away from him and he was essentially a prisoner. He’s joked about being “coked out” and insisted (maybe sincerely?) that cancer can be beaten with a combination of water, black coffee and fasting.

Garcia has talked openly about struggling with depression and mental health challenges in the past, and a lot of his behavior lately has led people to wonder if he might be spiraling out of control. Then again, he also has a reputation as a savvy self-promoter of the social media age, so there has also been plenty of speculation that he’s merely pretending to be unhinged to drive interest in the fight.

Real or just a persona, that behavior cost Garcia quite literally on Friday. And he still has to fight Haney.