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Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller approved for license by NSAC, to fight on July 9 on ESPN

Image: Jarrell 'Big Baby' Miller approved for license by NSAC, to fight on July 9 on ESPN

By Jim Maltzman: It’s been a year since Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller missed out on a big payday against Anthony Joshua due to a positive test for several PEDs, and he’s now set to return to the ring.

The unbeaten heavyweight Miller (23-0-1, 20 KOs) has been approved by the Nevada State Athletic Commission to fight for his boxing license, according to @MikeCoppinger.

The 32-year-old Miller will be fighting next month on July 9 in the main event on a Top Rank Boxing card on ESPN.

Jarrell Miller vs. Jerry Forrest on July 9

His opponent could be Jerry Forrest (26-3, 20 KOs), says Chris Mannix. Top Rank is negotiating the Miller vs. Forrest fight for Big Baby’s July 9 card. Miller-Forrest may not be a great fight, but it compares favorably with some of the other battles that we’ve seen with Top Rank’s card.

Forrest can punch, and he recently gave the talented unbeaten Jermaine Franklin (20-0, 13 KOs) a lot of problems in losing a 10 round split decision last July. Since 2013, Forrest has won 19 of 20 fights.

Earlier this month, Miller said he would be facing Carlos Takam for the July date, but it’s unclear what happened with that.

Image: Jarrell 'Big Baby' Miller approved for license by NSAC, to fight on July 9 on ESPN

Miller is going to need to bring his A-game with him on July 9 for him to beat the 32-year-old Forrest because he’s an active fighter, who will be looking to ruin Big Baby’s comeback.

Top Rank is going to try and rebuild Miller’s career in the same way they’ve done with Tyson Fury, and could soon see him in a big fight.

Some fans believe that the personable ‘Big Baby’ Miller has paid his price for his positive tests by losing out on the large purse for the Joshua fight on June 1 last year, and the long delay in getting his license to fight back.

Had Miller fought Joshua, he would have likely received the same $5 million that his replacement Andy Ruiz Jr got.

Who knows what would have happened if Miller had fought AJ that night. Joshua looked like a bodybuilder, and he never recovered after Ruiz knocked him down twice in round three.

Miller wants to knock out the top heavyweights

“It’s been good working with Bob [Arum], and figuring out what’s the best road to take, and I can’t wait,” said Big Baby Miller to IFL TV. “There’s a lot of different avenues we can take right now.

“The main thing is getting in the rankings as soon as possible, and doing it strategically right now. There are a lot of fights that can happen right now. I heard about Manuel Charr for the regular WBA belt that’ll get me right back.

“There are a lot of different things and a lot of different aspects. The main thing is sitting down with the team and figuring out what’s the best route to take. Then it’s once we come up with a game plan, it’s execute it strongly and nonstop.

“Any of these top three guys get me going and get me fired up. I’ve been doing a lot of homework, and I want to get back into the ring as soon as possible.

“I don’t care who it is and where it’s at, I just want to knock somebody’s head off, and I want to prove to the fans that Big Baby’s mind is 100 percent right,” said Miller.

It’s probably going to be a while before Miller gets the opportunity to face a big name like Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury, Anthony Joshua, or Dillian Whyte. All those guys have fights planned, and they’re not going to be looking at facing Miller.

The positive drug tests for Miller puts him in a wrong position to get the essential fights that he wants in the division. He can eventually get one of the elite heavyweights to face him, but it’s going to take time. Miller may need to become mandatory before he gets a title shot.

Image: Jarrell 'Big Baby' Miller approved for license by NSAC, to fight on July 9 on ESPN

Miller: I’m coming with a vengeance

“We’re doing everything by the book,” said Miller. “What happened the first time was a mistake, and I’m a fighter. I’m kind of keeping my distance [from people] because I don’t want any mistakes that will keep me out of the ring and from handling my business. I’m keeping my distance, but I’m not really in big crowds. That’s the main thing.

“I’m coming from a vengeance from hell, and everybody is going to get this work,” said Miller in sending his message to the top heavyweights in the division. “Everybody is going to get this work, and I don’t care who it is.

“If Dillian Whyte wants this smoke, he can get this smoke. No matter who it is, I’m coming for Everybody’s neck, and I’m not going to have any mercy. The managers and promoters, too,” said Miller.

Forrest will be the first guy that Big Baby will need to prove himself against, and there’s a chance he could lose if he’s not at 100%. If Miller isn’t the same guy that beat Adamek and Din, then Forrest may defeat him.

Miller missed out on Joshua fight

There’s a good chance that Miller would have beaten Joshua on the night, and he’d have been the one that fought him last December in a rematch.

Also, the chances are that Miller wouldn’t have slacked off in training camp for the rematch with Joshua the way Ruiz did, and he might have beaten him again. This is all just speculation, of course, but you have to admit that Miller would have a good chance against Joshua last June.

Miller tested positive for the following banned substances last year that kept him out of the Joshua fight:

  • GW501516
  • EPO
  • HGH

After those positive tests by Miller, the New York State Athletic Commission (NYSAC) had no choice but to reject him for a boxing license in the States. What’s interesting is the NYSAC were unable to suspend Miller due to the positive tests for PEDs because he didn’t possess a boxing license.

The World Boxing Association gave the 6’4″ Miller a six-month suspension, and he was taken out of their top 15 rankings.

“Sources: Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller has been approved for a license by Nevada commission, paving way for his return. He’s slated to make Top Rank debut July 9 in an ESPN headline fight.

“Miller tested positive for multiple PEDs ahead of a planned fight with Anthony Joshua last year,” said Mike Coppinger on Twiter.

Image: Jarrell 'Big Baby' Miller approved for license by NSAC, to fight on July 9 on ESPN

Ring rust could be a problem for Big Baby

Miller will likely have a lot of ring rust on him for his July 9 fight. The last time Miller fought was in November 2018 in beating Bogdan Dinu (19-2, 15 KOs) by a fourth-round knockout.

Miller looked great in that fight and showed off his power in beating the previously undefeated Dinu. Before that, Miller stopped former two-division world champion Tomasz Adamek (53-6, 31 KOs) by a second-round knockout in October 2018 in sending him into retirement.



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