Anthony Joshua vs. Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller in the works for June 1 or 8 at MSG, NY
By Scott Gilfoid: Anthony Joshua (22-0, 21 KOs) appears to be on the verge of defending his IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight titles against #2 WBA, #4 WBO Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller (23-0-1, 20 KOs) on June 1 or June 8 at Madison Square Garden in New York, according to Mike Coppinger.
It’ still not official, but it’s looking like this will be the 29-year-old Joshua’s next fight, and what an awful one at that.
Some boxing fans see Miller as a 315 pound punching bag with arms. He’s a great talker though, which is probably the main reason Hearn signed him to his Matchroom Boxing stable. Miller’s gift for gab makes up for his lack of talent. Miller would do all the talking in a promotion with the normally tongue-tied Joshua, who rarely has anything interesting to say during interviews. The combination of Miller and Eddie Hearn would do the heavy lifting for a Joshua-Miller promotion.
If Joshua faces Miller on June 1 or June 8, it’s going to make it tough to fight on either of those dates if he still goes ahead and fights on April 13 at Wembley Stadium in London, England. There won’t be much time for Joshua to recover after his April fight to get back into the ring in June.
With Tyson Fury and WBC champion Deontay ‘Bronze Bomber’ Wilder not interested in the 60/40 purse splits offered to them by Matchroom Sport promoter Eddie Hearn for a fight against Joshua on April 13 at Wembley Stadium, it leaves the 30-year-old Miller as the last man standing for Eddie. This could be by design thought, considering that Hearn has been talking up a fight between Joshua and the 315 pound Miller a lot recently.
Hearn co-promotes Miller, and he’s matched him carefully to raise his profile by putting him in against beatable opposition in Tomasz Adamek, Bogdan Dinu, Johann Duhaupas and Mariusz Wach. what Hearn wants to do is raise Joshua’s profile in the U.S the way by putting him in with Miller. After the American boxing public sees Joshua destroy Miller on the DAZN platform in June, they’ll be more interested in watching the winner of the Deontay Wilder vs. Fury 2 fight face him in a big unification match later this year.
“Sources: Anthony Joshua could make his U.S. debut against Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller on June 1 or June 8 at MSG. Heavyweight championship fight would headline a DAZN show. No deal yet; just talks,” said Mike Coppinger on his Twitter.
Hearn has already booked Wembley Stadium for April 13. If Joshua leaves that date to fight on June 1 or 9th against Miller, it’s going to be hard to replace him. Hearn doesn’t have a big enough fight to fill the April 13 date at Wembley Stadium. Hearn’s best option to take the April date is Kell Brook if he can find a big enough name to fill the stadium. Jessie Vargas revealed this week that his management is in negotiations for a fight against Brook for April. That’s not nearly a big enough fight to fill Wembley Stadium.
If Hearn’s plan is to switch out Joshua for the April 13 date and install the Brook vs. Vargas fight, it could be a nearly empty stadium. Vargas has not won a fight in 2 years, and he’s just spinning his wheels as far as career goes. Vargas is not cut out to be a top welterweight. He was a much better fighter when he was at 140. Obviously, Vargas has outgrown the division, so he’s now at 147, struggling and not winning fights. Hearn is going to look bad if he matches Brook against Vargas and tries sticking that fight into the headliner spot at Wembley Stadium on April 13.