Hearn says Anthony Joshua could face Jarrell Miller next
By Marcus Richardson: Eddie Hearn is saying that Anthony Joshua could defend his IBF, WBA heavyweight titles next against unbeaten American Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller next in New York. Joshua (20-0, 20 KOs) is currently set to face WBO heavyweight champion Joseph Parker (24-0, 18 KOs) on March 31st. Joshua is a big favorite to win that fight though.
Hearn had previously mentioned WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury and Alexander Povetkin as potential options for his second fight of 2018 after the unification match against the 26-year-old Parker at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales.
It could be that Hearn is interested in making the Joshua vs. Wilder fight for later this year in December. That would explain why Hearn would want to match Joshua against the 29-year-old Miller, because it’s a fight that will increase Joshua’s popularity in the U.S.
Miller says he’s co-promoted by Salita Promotions, but he also has a deal with Hearn and his Matchroom Sport company.
”I fight one more guy and then I get AJ next. That’s Eddie Hearn’s idea. He told me. I’m my own promoter, number 1. I have a co-promotional deal with Salita Promotions, and we did a deal with Eddie Hearn and HBO. That’s the promoter right now,” Miller said.
Miller is scheduled to fight on HBO on April 28 on the undercard of Daniel Jacobs vs. Gary ‘Spike’ O’Sullivan at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Middleweight Jacobs recently signed a promotional deal with Hearn, and he also signed a multi-fight deal with HBO, as did Jarrell Miller.
With Miller being one of Hearn’s fighters in his Matchroom stable, it makes a great deal of sense for Hearn to match him up against Joshua as soon as possible. Hearn would be increasing the visibility of Joshua in the United States by matching him against the VERY vocal 6’4” Miller, while at the same time he would be helping one of his new fighters in his Matchroom stable to increase his popularity. It works well for Hearn, as both of his fighters get a big career boost in popularity.
There is some risk for Hearn in matching the 6’5” Joshua against Miller. There’s a chance that Miller could wear Joshua down with his high pressure, high volume attacking style and knock him out. Miller is clearly a more dangerous fighter for Joshua than Dillian Whyte. Joshua was hurt by Whyte in their fight in 2015 before he suffered a shoulder injury and gassed out after round 2. Miller doesn’t gas out in his fights. He’s capable of throwing massive numbers of punches for a full 12 round fight without gassing. Miller also has excellent punching power. If Joshua can’t knock Miller out, he might end up getting stopped.
”The minute he’s hurt, he’s out of there, point blank period,” Miller said of Joshua. ”A young guy like me, I’m going to break his neck, and AJ knows that. He’s the good boy in boxing. He’s England’s hero.”
Miller isn’t lacking in confidence to beat Joshua. He’s also mindful of not making the same mistake that Wladimir Klitschko made in his fight with Joshua in July of 2017. Miller says if he hurts Joshua, he’s going to go after him and look to take his head off.
Dillian Whyte is also a possibility for Joshua’s next fight if he defeats Lucas Browne in their fight on March 24th in London, UK. Whyte (22-1, 16 KOs) is also signed with Hearn. However, Whyte is from the UK, and he wouldn’t be a good option for Joshua to fight in the U.S to build his presence in that country. The U.S casual boxing fans aren’t familiar with Whyte or Joshua yet. Miller would be a better option for Joshua to fight in the U.S than Whyte. Miller is arguably better at hyping his fights with his gift for gab. Miller talks trash without using a lot of expletives the way some fighters do. He’s a fan friendly fighter.