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Javier Fortuna calls Devin Haney a coward, looks forward to Jorge Linares clash

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Fortuna says Haney backtracked from him so he could target Yuriorkis Gamboa.

Brian Carlos Castano v Wale Omotoso Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

Javier Fortuna (35-2-1, 24 KOs) has come out with some harsh words for WBC lightweight champion Devin Haney, calling the young American fighter a coward for skirting a bout against him and instead targeting Yuriorkis Gamboa — who is coming off an Achilles tear.

From RingTV:

“When the pandemic started, Haney reclaimed his title via email. And that’s what he is – an email champion besides being a coward. Now he wants to fight Yuriorkis Gamboa instead.”

That change in course has led Fortuna to another bout, against former titleholder Jorge Linares (47-5, 29 KOs) on August 28th in Indio, California. Fortuna says that fight gives him the kind of credible opponent he needs to bolster his standing int he sport.

“I have been trying to secure a signature win for a long time in my career, to honor the Dominican Republic and (my native city of) La Romana,” Fortuna explained. “A victory against Linares would be just that.”

Fortuna, 31, heads into this fight coming off a stoppage win over Jesus Cuellar last November while Linares, 34, scored a knockout win over Carlos Morales in February. As for Haney, well, he’s been talking a big game in the media, but he’s yet to face a top flight opponent despite holding the ‘world champion’ distinction.