Whyte upset, says Jarrell Miller could face Anthony Joshua next
By Scott Gilfoid: Dillian ‘The Body Snatcher’ Whyte (25-1, 18 KOs) is up in arms in complaining about how he’s not heard a peep out of Anthony Joshua (22-0, 21 KOs) for a fight between them on April 13 on Sky Box Office at Wembley Stadium in London, England.
Whyte says he’s heard rumors that Joshua will be fighting American Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller (23-0-1, 20 KOs) in his next fight at Madison Square Garden in New York. If that turns out to the situation, then Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn is going to need to find someone popular to plug into the place of Joshua to try and fill the giant 100,000 seat Wembley Stadium on April 13. Amir Khan is rumored to be fighting WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford in February, so he’s not a good possibility of facing Kell Brook on April 13.
Joshua vs. Miller wouldn’t be a fight for the British boxing fans, since they don’t seem eager to see this match. Joshua-Miller would be a fight for the U.S boxing fans, and a way to help build Joshua’s brand in America. If Hearn had his way, Joshua would likely continue to fight in the UK for the remainder of his career without ever coming to the States, but then again he would never build a fan base there. If Joshua is the one that making the decision to fight in America, then he’s showing foresight in realizing that he can become a bigger star if he starts fighting in the U.S against the top names. Joshua is already a star in the UK, so there’s no point in him to continue fighting over there on a regular basis. Right now, Joshua needs to be fighting the likes of Miller. Luis ‘King Kong’ Ortiz, Wilder, Bryant Jennings, Adam Kownacki, and Dominic Breazeale in the U.S.
Whyte says he’ll have a meeting with Hearn in mid-January to discuss his next fight. It’s likely at that time, Hearn will reveal the bad news for Whyte that he doesn’t have the fight with Joshua on April 13. If Joshua chooses Miller over Whyte, it’ll be a decision made on him being a proven player, someone that can bring in the boxing fans. Facing Miller will help Joshua build a fans base in the U.S to help make a unification fight against WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder a bigger affair for when they eventually fight each other.
“I want to know what’s going on so I can get prepared,” Whyte said to IFL TV about the possibility of fighting Joshua on April 13. “The rumor is Joshua is going to fight Jarrell Miller at Madison Square Garden.”
Miller is tentatively scheduled to fight on DAZN against an opponent still to be determined on January 18. That’s a date that will likely be canceled if he gets the fight against IBF/WBA/WBO champion Joshua (22-0, 21 KOs).
In some respects, Whyte has done more to earn a title shot against Joshua than Jarrell has, but that doesn’t matter. The British boxing public, as well as the U.S fan, aren’t interested in seeing a needless rematch between Joshua and Whyte. The fans want to see new blood in with Joshua, and the 6’4″ 315 pound Miller is exactly what they want. What the boxing fans really want is to see Joshua face WBC champion Deontay Wilder (40-0-1, 39 KOs), but that’s not a fight that is going to happen right now. Wilder has unfinished business with former unified champion Tyson Fury to clear up the controversy over their 12 round split draw from December 1. Wilder would, of course, put the Fury (27-0-1, 19 KOs) rematch on the back-burner if Hearn would give him the 50-50 purse split that he’s been asking for, but they don’t want to give him his money. As such, Joshua isn’t fighting Wilder next, and it remains uncertain whether he ever will. Some fights can’t be made due to champions and their promoters feeling likely they have the right to ask for the lion’s share each time they negotiate with another fighter. What Joshua and Hearn seem to be forgetting is Wilder is a world champion in his own rights, and he’s a popular fighter that brings a lot to the table. Hearn doesn’t seem to be willing to acknowledge what Wilder brings.
It won’t be surprising if Joshua takes the fight with American Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller next instead of facing Whyte in a retread fight. If you saw how energized Joshua was in doing commentary for Saul Canelo Alvarez’s last fight against former WBA ‘regular’ super middleweight champion Rocky Fielding on December 15 at Madison Square Garden in New York, it’s easy to see why AJ has suddenly got the fever about wanting to fight in New York against ‘Big Baby’ Miller. The fans were were making a lot of noise during the Canelo-Fielding fight, and Joshua admitted that he would like to be in the same environment.
Although Madison Square Garden is a lot smaller than Wembley Stadium, and only holds 20,789 fans, the way the seats are situated, it makes it seem like a larger, louder environment. The seats at Madison Square Garden are close to the ring, and the fans are literally on top of the action. That makes the place really loud, and the fighters love that kind of environment. For a guy like Joshua, who seems to fight better when he’s responding to a loud crowd, Madison Square Garden is made for him.
Whyte, 30, thought he had eared the right to fight Joshua, 29, after his eleventh round knockout of Dereck Chisora in their rematch on December 22 at the O2 Arena in London, England. Despite the fact that Chisora is only a fringe level contender at this point in his career, Whyte still felt that a victory over him was enough to get the Joshua rematch.
It’s common knowledge that Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn wants to have him fight whyte on April 13, but he’s not the one that calls the shots for the 6’6″ heavyweight champion. Joshua is the decider, and he’s already sounding bored with the idea of fighting Whyte again after he knocked him out in the seventh round in December 2015. Facing a guy that Joshua already knocked out before in Whyte is kind of a letdown type of fight. It’s like going on a trip to the same place that you went to last time, and you weren’t impressed with the location. Whyte didn’t do much last time he fought Joshua other than briefly hurt him in round two. After the second round, Whyte was little more than a punching bag for Joshua. Alexander Povetkin hurt Joshua in the second round in their fight on September 22, and no one is saying that he deserves a rematch. Whyte hasn’t much to rate a rematch. Hearn obviously wants him to fight Joshua again because it would be an in house fight for his Matchroom Sport promotional stable, but he’s not in control of the situation.
“I’d love to fight for the WBA regular title,” Whyte said.
If Whyte doesn’t get the fight with Joshua next on April 13, it would be nice for Dillian to fight someone talented like Luis Ortiz. If Whyte faces Ortiz, he would be in the position to actually earn a rematch with Joshua instead of having it given to him after wins over Chisora, Lucas ‘Big Daddy’ Browne, Robert Helenius, Malcolmn Tann, Ivica Bacurin, Dave Allen, and Joseph Parker.
Whyte is rated #4 by the World Boxing Association, behind Trevor Bryant, Jarrell Miller and Fres Oquendo. If Hearn can work his magic with the WBA, then perhaps he can setup a fight between Whyte and one of those fighters for the vacant WBA ‘regular’ heavyweight title. Joshua holds the real WBA belt, the one counts, called the WBA Super World belt. If Whyte gets his hands on the WBA ‘regular’ title, he would be holding the secondary strap, and not the one that the boxing public cares about. Whyte sounds like he doesn’t care. He just wants a title.