Hearn, Espinoza Engage In Heated Twitter Battle
By: Sean Crose
Not only did super promoter Eddie Hearn throw down publicly with Showtime Sports’ honcho Stephen Espinoza on Tuesday, the two boxing powerhouses offered a rare glimpse into the inner workings of the sport at its highest level. The Twitter fight was centered around Anthony Joshua – the heavyweight powerhouse who, at the moment, possesses multiple titles in boxing’s glamor division – and a potential bout against he and American knockout artist (and WBC heavyweight titlist) Deontay Wilder. The megafight was in discussions last year before eventually falling flat. Wider went on to fight a memorable, controversial battle with former heavyweight kingpin Tyson Fury, while Joshua prepares to make his US debut against Jarrell “Bib Baby” Miller this spring.
While the heart of the Hearn-Espinoza argument dealt with a fight that never was made, the details of the online battle focused on international broadcast rights. “Contract was sent and Matchroom saw it,” Espinoza tweeted. “Contract said Sky (a British outlet) got the UK rights.” Hearn responded by essentially calling Espinoza a liar. Espinoza then suggested that Hearn lied when discussing broadcast rights for the 2017 bout between Joshua and former heavyweight champ Wladimir Klitschko (which Showtime was able to air in the US).
Espinoza then moved back to last year’s Joshua-Wilder negotiations, showing what appeared to be a portion of a contract dealing with Sky Sports and broadcasting rights (presumably for the potential Wilder fight). Hearn responded by demanding that Espinoza “show the contract you (Espinoza) sent.” Espinoza tweeted that he never claimed to have sent it but that “Wilder sent it and you (Hearn) confirmed receipt.” Hearn reacted with a tweet filled with emojis and capitalization. “…so now you are saying the personal email from Wilder (that was one paragraph) offering $50m was a contract!!!!,” he stated. “Hahaha – CONTRACT WAS REQUESTED AND NEVER SENT.”
“Three detailed pages,” Espinoza replied, “not one paragraph.” Hearn continued to hold onto his position. “I repeat,” he tweeted, “despite requests we NEVER received a 1 page, 3 page or 50 page contract. If I’m lying then show the contract you sent.” Espinoza then reiterated that he “never said ‘we’ sent a contract. I said a contract was sent.” Hearn insisted that team Joshua “NEVER received a contract from you, Wilder or ANYONE despite requests.” Espinoza went on to tweet “I’m not going to expose private business arrangements in a Twitter discussion.” The argument went on, however, with each side accusing the other of being less than forthright.
“You lost AJ because you ran out of money you know that,” Hearn went on to claim, indicating that Showtime can no longer air Joshua fights. “You also don’t have one of the top 3 heavyweights under contract. I get you are under pressure but don’t tell porky pies. Have a nice day.”
Anthony Joshua – Jarrell Miller UK Press Conf Quotes
In a press conference on Monday afternoon, DAZN and Matchroom USA gathered across the pond in London to formally announce the United States debut of Anthony Joshua who will defend his WBA Super, IBF, WBO and IBO World Heavyweight titles against Brooklyn’s Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller at Madison Square Garden on Saturday June 1, live on DAZN.
Photo Credit: Mark Robinson / Matchroom USA
Joseph Markowski – DAZN Executive Vice President, North America
“The level of interest in the fight is quite significant, and as Adam said, AJ and Jarrell spent four days in the U.S. last week speaking to press, and to be honest we could of spent four days doing more – The New York Times, Sports Illustrated, Forbes, amongst Americas biggest media outlets couldn’t get enough of both fighters because like us, they believe we’re headed towards a truly special night on June 1 at Madison Square Garden. From our perspective it’s a true honor to be the host broadcaster of this event in New York, and very much like DAZN, AJ has ambitions to be a global force – to do so, occasionally you have to take your show on the road, and in this case over the pond. For the first time in his career, AJ will be fighting primetime in the United States, but it’s important to stress he’s not just fighting in America, he’s up against a dangerous opponent in Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller – a man with as much to say as anyone in the game, so it’s going to be a great night. With so many Brits making plans for June 1, we’re just very excited and looking forward to hosting all of you in New York on that night.”
“UK, what’s up? I’m in a better mood as you can see, I had a cup of tea. I’m just chilling, I already said what I had to say. You already know how I feel about AJ, you all know my back story, know where I come from, and know where we’re going. It’s a blessing to be here, and I just can’t wait for June 1.”
“We’re going to do the thing, man. I’ve been hearing from the fans themselves saying AJ is to posh – his nose is up here sometimes. They don’t give two licks about him right now, I’m for the underdogs. For all the underdogs out there, people telling them they’re not good enough, or people telling them they’re too fat, or whatever the discrete is they want discriminate against you, don’t listen to them, just keep pushing through because I’m a proving factor that hard work and dedication, and you know one or two cheeseburgers and a cup tea you can go real far. Let’s go to work, June 1, there will be fireworks, and there will be that saying that I love so much, ‘And the new,’ so tune-in June 1 on DAZN for $9.99, and watch me kick AJ’s butt.”
On what you think it takes to get it done:
“See that’s the problem, you think, I don’t think, I just get it done. That’s my mentality, is set is any task in front of me, I go balls to the walls, there’s no turning back, no if, and, or but’s about it. If I doubted myself one step of the way I would of never made it this far, and we going to continue to go forward and keep working hard, and the game plan is stop behind in seven round – point, blank, period.”
On what would it mean to you to win the title:
“It would mean a whole lot, but we’re going in to win the title, and the title is one step of what we want to accomplish in the future – change lives, change countries, do positive things in the community, and around the world, and be a real model, not a role model where you just put make-up on and pretend to be something I’m not. Yes, winning the title is the goal right now, but we know we’re looking to future to do amazing things around the world and be an ambassador of the human race and that’s what we’re going do.”
“New York was ten out of ten, no lie. There’s nothing like being on UK soil, got my head down, and get back to routine and regimen, and that’s how I like living my lifestyle, on a regimented format and focus on what’s ahead of me and that’s a Jarrell Miller. You know I’m not fighting any of his team members, or anyone that can speak for him, I’m fighting him. There won’t be many words said in the ring except for punches being exchanged. It’s the battle of the fittest, the battle of the smartest, and the last man will be standing.”
On different mentality last week:
“Oh I loved it, that’s what I live for every day. It’s just another opponent – you need a dancing partner right, and Jarrell is a good dancing partner. I’m only champion till June 1, and that’s when I step on the battlefield to defend my stripes, and June 2 will be irrelevant and I step forward to next task ahead of me. It was a good time in New York, Daniel Jacobs came out, looked after me, and met so many people, radio stations, and went out of New York for a week and had a real good time.”
On opportunities being handed to him:
“You know I come from a great family, my mother raised me well, my father raised me well, my aunts and uncles, my brothers and sisters, we all look after each other. My cousin was fighting at the time, I got banned from where I grew up, got in too much trouble, and moved out of the area. I sat down in boxing because I used to drive my cousin and I was making money, had the car back then, and I used to sit back and think that looks easy. He lent me 35 pounds, about 25 dollars, I went to buy boxing boots and he gave me some shorts. I started training, I got beaten up a bit, I beat a few people up, and from the point forward I realized do I want to smoke and drink? Face the verge of jail or do I want to focus on boxing? If you look at the state of my hands, this isn’t from boxing, this is from street fighting, so I realized I was getting in trouble for fighting in the streets and getting patted on the back for boxing, so I started boxing. Boxing to me isn’t about Jarrell Miller, it’s not about Tyson Fury, Dillian Whyte, it’s about me – what does it make me, as a person. I changed my life style around, my family’s life style around and we’re impacting the community. All my friends over here, we have some great plans for the community, and that’s what impact means to me.
“This is what I know, this what I do, I don’t know no football, no rugby, no NFL, no basketball, no kickboxing. I like knocking people out, I like to beat them up. All this spirit this boy has in him, talking shit, I’m going to strip it from him. Every ounce of spirit he’s got, that’s what I do to people. I’m going to strip him of his soul in that ring. Talk about seven rounds, I will still be there fighting strong, if he’s still in there. Look at his face, I’m going to reconstruct his face on June 1, and I’m really looking forward to the challenge.”
For more information, fans can follow DAZN’s U.S. social channels: @DAZNUSA on Facebook, @DAZN_USA for Twitter, and DAZN_USA for Instagram.
Anthony Joshua vs. Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller Press Conference Quotes
Media gathered for the kick off press conference at Madison Square Garden in New York City on Tuesday February 19. DAZN and Matchroom USA formally announced the United States debut of Anthony Joshua to defend his WBA Super, IBF, WBO and IBO World Heavyweight titles against Brooklyn’s Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller at Madison Square Garden on Saturday June 1, live on DAZN.
“He punches like a fairy. Fury knocked him down seven times. He’s the softest puncher in the division. I am going to knock him the f*ck out. He is a drug abuser. He’s a kickboxer. I am going to knock him out. (Miller screams about Anthony’s mother.) Where’s your mother? I am paying her rent with this. She will come here and watch a real champion fight.
“Jarrell Miller is a little b*tch. I am going to throw this jab down his throat. For a guy that is 300 pounds, he punches like a fairy. June 1st – this is going to be a show. Come out and watch this one New York. I am not up here playing the gangster role. I really knock people out, look at his little hands. This is the first time he will sell out a show and it’s because of me. Of course he spends all day thinking about me and watching my fights, he has to – but it still won’t be good enough.”
“I’m home. I’m ready. You have no idea. I breathe, eat, sleep Anthony Joshua. I have a screen saver of Anthony Joshua. I wake up and think about Anthony Joshua. I see my mother go through some stuff that none of you would survive. I grew up in a third world country. I see my family starving with no shoes on their feet. This is bigger than a fight with Anthony Joshua. It is bigger than me. It is bigger than money.
“There were many years that I didn’t know what I was doing with my life. I’ve always had this anger and drive in my stomach though that would keep me going. I knew that I must be fighting for something. Man, God has a plan for everybody, remember that. It’s bigger than me though, and AJ is just in my way.
“Yeah, he won the Olympics. But that was in his city, they gave it to him. People call me the underdog but that’s alright. I want to be the underdog. I wasn’t born with a silver spoon.
“I want to thank New York City. Thank my mother and my wife. My sister and my trainers. We are from the dirt. From the gutter. We are from under the dirt but I work hard for this. He didn’t want this fight first. He wanted to fight Whyte. That’s fact.
“The more that you understand what boxing is. All that humble, that fake shit – he puts it on. Boxing is not a humble sport. I will leave it with this, we are all going to die one day. I have lost five people this year. That’s what keeps me humble.”
Joseph Markowski – DAZN Executive Vice President, North America
“Watching Anthony Joshua fight in the U.K. is one of the most spectacular experiences that I’ve encountered in boxing. The crowds, the fireworks and the noise are quite remarkable. But like DAZN, AJ has ambitions to be a global superstar and achieving that means taking your show on the road, across the Pond.
“For the first time in his career, Anthony Joshua will be fighting live and in primetime in the United States. And he’s not just fighting in America; he is going right to the hometown of a dangerous Top 10 heavyweight in Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller – a man with as much to say as almost anyone else in the boxing game.
“And for that reason, today is just the beginning of a fantastic fight promotion. The New York Times, ESPN, Sports Illustrated and many others have invited AJ and Jarrell to their offices this week to discuss the bout. It’s a compelling matchup that is already generating genuine buzz in the US.
“Moreover, it demonstrates DAZN’s continued commitment to our mission goal of delivering amazing value to fight fans. By the time of AJ-Miller, U.S. boxing fans will have already slogged through several expensive pay-per-views in 2019. More than $200 for three fight nights. For that type of money, you could have DAZN for two years and get every boxing and MMA fight on our platform.
“You can see the momentum we’re building in the names we are signing and the types of fights we are making: AJ’s debut in the U.S., Canelo Alvarez vs. Daniel Jacobs for Cinco de Mayo. And there is more to be announced very soon.
“To both fighters, thank you and good luck. And to everyone else, thank you for attending today – we look forward to seeing you on the 1st of June back here at MSG.”
Eddie Hearn – Matchroom Boxing Managing Director
“We have a seen a rise in the sport with DAZN. They signed Canelo Alvarez, delivered a huge fight between Canelo and Daniel Jacobs on May 4, and now DAZN will feature the biggest heavyweight fight by delivering Anthony Joshua to the United State to face Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller.”
For more information, fans can follow DAZN’s U.S. social channels: @DAZNUSA on Facebook, @DAZN_USA for Twitter, and DAZN_USA for Instagram.
Joshua, Miller, Engage In Hostile Presser
By: Sean Crose
Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller decided sportsmanship wasn’t his thing at Tuesday’s presser to kick off his June 1st heavyweight title fight against Anthony Joshua at Madison Square Garden. No sooner were the two men face to face, than Brooklyn’s Miller gave the champion a hard shove. Joshua, for the moment at least, was cool as ice, as is generally his way. Overall, however, the presser was a mutually hostile affair which, while being good for business, also led some to feel there is genuine dislike between the two undefeated hitters. Joshua, clearly the more easy going of the two men, even got wrapped up in the moment.
Photo Credit: Matchroom Boxing Twitter Account
“I got a picture on my wall of Anthony Joshua,” said Miller. “I wake up in the morning with Anthony Joshua.” Miller’s talk got tough when it was Joshua’s turn to speak. Calling his opponent an “Uncle Tom,” a cheater, and someone who shouldn’t be considered a role model, the 23-0-1 New Yorker pulled out all the stops in order to get inside the British multi-titlist’s head. Joshua was not one to be outdone. “Miller’s a little bitch,” he said. “I am going to knock him the fuck out. He is a drug abuser…I am going to knock him out.”
A presser involving mother jokes – and this was just that kind of presser – often isn’t a serious affair. Both men had some serious things to say, however. Miller spoke of his tough upbringing, while Joshua let it be known that he would have his man finished by the fourth round. “I am going to throw this jab down his throat,” claimed the 22-0 Englishman. “This is going to be a show. Come out and watch this one, New York. I am not up here playing the gangster role. I really knock people out. Look at his little hands.” Joshua also brought up Miller’s drawing power. “This is the first time he will sell out a show,” he said of his opponent,” and it’s because of me. Of course, he spends all day thinking about me and watching my fights — he has to — but it still won’t be good enough.”
This will be the first time Joshua has fought in the United States. An enormous attraction in his homeland, Joshua – along with promoter Eddie Hearn – is hoping to extend this superstardom to the United States, where the heavyweight champion of the world hasn’t been a well known figure in years. The Joshua-Hearn battle will be aired live on the DAZN streaming service.
Joshua-Miller Pre-Sales Break Record At Madison Square Garden
By: Sean Crose
“Anthony Joshua’s World Heavyweight title clash with Jarrell Miller at Madison Square Garden is already the hottest ticket in New York after becoming the highest grossing pre-sale for a boxing event at the famous arena.” So beamed Matchroom Sports in a Friday press release boasting of its pre-sales for the Anthony Joshua – Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller showdown on June first at Madison Square Garden. The pre-sale numbers are nothing but good news for heavyweight kingpin Joshua and Matchroom honcho Eddie Hearn, who is hoping to make Joshua as big a draw in the United States as he is in England, where the 22-0 multi title holder is able to literally sell out stadiums.
“We know that AJ is a huge box office hit in the UK,” said Hearn, “but to break the pre-sale record at the iconic Madison Square Garden is astounding…we are building a huge event on June 1 and we look forward to the all the build-up beginning with next Tuesdays press conference in New York.” Joshua’s American debut will put him up against the colorful Brooklynite Miller, who himself is undefeated, with a record of 23-0-1. The bout will be aired live on the DAZN streaming service.
Like Hearn, Joel Fisher, the executive vice president of MSG Marquee Events, was quick to express his pleasure with reported pre-sales. “We are thrilled with the early excitement for tickets,” he said, “Anthony Joshua versus Jarrell Miller will be an epic event at Madison Square Garden and we encourage fans to purchase tickets now because this fight will sell out.” Boxing’s rejuvenated heavyweight division hit American shores, where it once dominated, in a big way last December when Tyson Fury battled WBC champion Deontay Wilder to a controversial, yet highly entertaining draw. An announcement for a rematch, which is also whispered to go down in the United States, is said to be imminent.
Joshua-Miller will be the second major heavyweight title fight in America in roughly six months. For Joshua’s WBA Super, IBF, WBO and IBO belts will be on the line when he squares off against Miller in the late spring. The winner of the match will surely be called on to face the victor of the presumed Wilder-Fury rematch in order to bring some much needed clarity to the divided heavyweight division. Although Joshua will presumably be the favorite leading up the Miller bout, Miller, the hard punching former kickboxing star, brings big power…and perhaps an underrated skill set of his own. What’s more, Miller is in possession of a showy, and outspoken personality, something that will surely be used as a selling point.
Anthony Joshua to Face Jarrell Miller in US Debut at Madison Square Garden
Heavyweight boxing’s biggest star Anthony Joshua OBE will defend his WBA Super, IBF, WBO and IBO World titles against Jarrell Miller in his long-awaited U.S. debut at the iconic Madison Square Garden in New York on Saturday, June 1, live on DAZN in the U.S. and Sky Sports Box Office in the UK.
Joshua (22-0, 21 KOs), defended his World titles with a devastating knockout of dangerous Russian Alexander Povetkin last time out at Wembley Stadium in September in what was the Olympic Champion’s fourth straight stadium fight in front of over 80,000 fans.
It was a crushing return to the scene of his historical triumph over legendary Champion Wladimir Klitschko in April 2017, where he produced the performance of a lifetime to claim the WBA crown in an unforgettable battle in front of a post war record crowd of 90,000 at England’s National Stadium.
The British sensation blasted Povetkin to the canvas with a brutal assault in the seventh round and then floored the WBA mandatory challenger again to signal a sudden and dramatic ending to his 22nd professional victory in his home city.
And now sport’s biggest name will follow in the footsteps of Heavyweight greats such as Joe Louis, Joe Frazier, Evander Holyfield and Muhammad Ali when he crosses the Atlantic to silence Brooklyn’s brash ‘Big Baby’ Miller at ‘The Mecca of Boxing’.
“June 1st I am heading to The Big Apple and I plan to embrace the culture and leave with an appetite for more,” said Joshua. “I will be fighting Jarrell Miller at the legendary Madison Square Garden. It has been an honour and a blessing to fight at some of the best venues in the World at home in the UK, not least Wembley Stadium, but the time has come to head across the Atlantic and defend my Heavyweight titles in the USA. I am looking forward to taking on another challenge with a good boxer & a brilliant talker, it will be an exciting fight, I will leave nothing to chance and plan on dismantling Miller in style to make my mark.”
Miller (23-0-1, 20 KOs), has been calling for a British scalp ever since he went face-to-face with Joshua during a heated exchange at the launch of DAZN’s streaming service in the U.S. in July last year, and the undefeated 300lbs giant is promising to turn AJ’s American dream into a living nightmare as he looks to announce himself on the biggest stage of all.
Miller earned his shot at Joshua with successive wins over former World title challengers Gerald Washington, Mariusz Wach, Johann Duhaupas and Tomasz Adamek, crushing the latter inside two rounds on his Matchroom Boxing USA debut at the Wintrust Arena in Chicago in October.
He followed this up with another big stoppage win, this time steamrolling Bogdan Dinu in four rounds to claim the interim NABA Heavyweight title at the Kansas Star Arena, and now Miller returns to his home city to fulfil a lifelong dream of fighting for the World Heavyweight crown.
“AJ is making a huge mistake coming over here to fight me in my own backyard,” said Miller. “He wants to announce himself on the American stage but all he’s doing is delivering me those belts by hand. Its dog eat dog in the ring and this dog has got a bigger bite, he’ll be leaving New York empty-handed. This is the fight that I’ve been chasing all my life and on June 1 I’m going to achieve the thing I was born to do and win the Heavyweight Championship of the World. That punk AJ is standing in the way of my dreams and on June 1 he’s getting run the hell over.”
“It’s been an eventful few months but I’m delighted to finally announce that Anthony Joshua will make his American debut at the iconic Madison Square Garden on June 1,” said Eddie Hearn, Matchroom Boxing Managing Director. “AJ has created an incredible ‘Lion’s Den’ atmosphere in the UK and we plan to bring that energy to New York on a card that will be stacked with British vs. American talent. When you look at the Heavyweight greats that have graced the renowned ‘Mecca of Boxing’ the names of Ali, Frazier, Marciano and Tyson stand firm and June 1will be a moment when the World will witness AJ’s turn.
“Jarrell Miller is someone I know well having been involved in his last 4 fights in America. I know how much he wants this fight and I know the belief that him and his team have in beating AJ. He is a mountain of a man with an incredible work rate and he will get the chance to challenge for 4 World Heavyweight belts in his backyard this summer. They went to head to head for all the wrong reasons last summer and next week they will do it again as we get ready for the big build up for a momentous moment on June 1st at MSG.”
“Anthony Joshua is the number one Heavyweight in the World and DAZN is excited to deliver the British star’s much-anticipated U.S. debut at the iconic Madison Square Garden,” said Joseph Markowski, DAZN Executive Vice President, North America. “In New York awaits a hometown fighter in Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller who has been quite vocal about his plans to spoil Joshua’s stateside arrival. He poses a real threat to dethrone the Heavyweight king in what will undoubtedly be a major international attraction and we are eager to see what will unfold June 1 on DAZN.”
“A new chapter for our brilliant World King Anthony Joshua as he looks to light up America for the first time against New York’s brash, big hitting Jarrell Miller,” said Adam Smith, Head of Sky Sports Boxing. “We are delighted to be showing this massive occasion on Sky Sports Box Office and our team will provide every step of an enticing build up between these unbeaten Heavyweights. This sizzling Summer showdown reminds me of when Prince Naseem Hamed conquered Manhattan amidst that thrilling seven knockdown war with Kevin Kelley. Now AJ hits NY and the global adventure begins!”
“The World Heavyweight Championship at Madison Square Garden is unlike any setting in the World and we couldn’t be more thrilled to host Anthony Joshua and Jarrell Miller,” said Joel Fisher, Executive Vice President, MSG Marquee Events. “The legacy of Heavyweights at ‘The Mecca of Boxing’ that began with the likes of John L. Sullivan, Gene Tunney, ‘Jersey’ Joe Wolcott, Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, Joe Louis, Evander Holyfield, Wladimir Klitschko and Lennox Lewis will continue when Joshua and Miller step into the famed Garden ring in front of a packed house on June 1.”
“On June 1 Brooklyn’s Jarrell Miller will fight in the World’s greatest city for boxing’s greatest title — the Heavyweight Championship of the World — on boxing’s biggest stage — ‘The Mecca of Boxing’ Madison Square Garden,” said Dmitriy Salita of Salita Promotions. “It is a dream come true for Jarrell, but it is exactly what we envisioned and what I promised him when I began working with Jarrell in his second professional fight. He is on the verge of making history and I am proud to have been there since the beginning. On June 1 Jarrell follow in the footsteps of Brooklyn Heavyweight greats Mike Tyson and Riddick Bowe to bring the Heavyweight World title back to its rightful home NY.”
“It is incredible to be a co-promoter of Jarrell Miller’s World title challenge against Anthony Joshua on June 1st streamed live on DAZN,” said Greg Cohen of Greg Cohen Promotions. “The fact that this event is taking place at Madison Square Garden makes it extra special as it’s a home game for Team Miller. I can’t wait to hear Michael Buffer announce, “And the NEW…!”
Anthony Joshua Close to Fighting Jarrell Miller as Dillian Whyte Talks Die
By: Waqas Ali
The heavyweight division has held a lot of negotiations and discussions about big fights in the past few months.
The fighters included Anthony Joshua, Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury, Dillian Whyte and Jerrell Miller.
Joshua mentioned in a leaked audio phone call that he would be heading over to the United States in preparation for a fight.
Though the 29-year-old didn’t mention the opponent’s name, it has since come forward that Jerrell Miller is the chosen one.
“I think we’re going to have to go to the States,” Joshua says in the leaked audio.
“The only thing I can think is if they’re trying to make me stop training and then two weeks later say, yeah we want to fight, and so I’m two weeks out of preparation.
“Other than that, in my mind I’m going to the states,” he added.
Dillian Whyte, a rival of Joshua, was in talks of a potential rematch with AJ in April but talks had fallen through.
He stated: ‘The Joshua fight’s dead. Sometimes things break down. There are lots of ins and outs but we move on.’
‘I am in a good position – I have options. I’ll hopefully fight Dominic Breazeale, Alexandar Povetkin or Luis Ortiz at the 02 on April 20. Breazeale’s my preference, he is WBC mandatory challenger.’
One theory of this fall-through was due to Whyte demanding more money for the bout with AJ. Allegedly, the figure amount was around £5 million.
This is similar to Wilder and Fury who also refused the terms offered to them in fighting Joshua.
Multiple sources including promoter Eddie Hearn have stated that a fight between AJ and Miller are close to a done deal and likely to take place in June at Madison Square Garden.
Many boxing legends fought in that arena such as Jack Dempsey, Sugar Ray Robinson, Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, Roberto Duran, Mike Tyson and many more.
Hearn stated: ‘It looks like AJ against Jarrell Miller in the summer in New York.’
He also said that Joshua facing Miller in his first US debut would be perfect for him, considering the power and aggression that the American brings to the table.
‘Dillian believes he can improve his value with another spectacular win and someone like Breazeale should give him the chance to prove it,’ Hearn added.
‘Miller is lesser known but as a big punching and undefeated New Yorker he will open a gateway for Joshua to the American market and wider recognition.’
But Miller (23-0-1) has vowed that he will not let AJ have his glory in his homeland of America and is ready to make a statement to the boxing world.
Miller has also stated that the deal is not yet.
He stated: “I was quiet for a little while, I had to take care of some internal stuff. We’re still having out, you know, these errors.
“But the ‘AJ’ fight is in the grasp and we’re trying to hash out the last couple of details. It’s not official yet, but I’m thinking it’s like 80 per cent [done]. It’s about 80 per cent, man. I can’t wait, man.
“He wants to come to America and I think it’s going to be great for USA boxing, especially for American boxing.
“And like I said before, I’ve been waiting for the moment to shock the world.
“AJ is a real big hype job. And when he fights a real gritty, hungry, mean person like me, it’s going to be a whole different story, man.”
Confirmation of the bout is expected this week.
But what styles, stats and variations does each fighter have?
Joshua, who holds the WBO, WBA, IBF and IBO heavyweight titles, has a record of 22 wins with 21 by knockout and no defeats. In his last eight wins, seven were knockouts and only one KO win past the tenth round.
He is currently ranked no.5 at Boxrec’s Pound for Pound ranking system and has a knockout ratio of 95%.
Joshua is penetrating and powerful with his punches. They are sweet to see but sour to taste.
He is a huge pay-per-view draw and has fought in big stadiums drawing crowds of 70,000, 21,000, 20,000 and even 90,000 in attendance for his fight against Wladamir Klitschko.
By the numbers, Joshua keeps himself active at a rate of 40 thrown per round and landing at 14 with a connect percentage of 35%. The average heavyweight throws around 44 and connects about 33%.
As a plus point, his opponents only land around 21% of their punches.
In the jab category, AJ throws at the same amount as the average heavyweight which is 20 and connects 31% of his punches while the average rate is 25%.
Miller, based in Brooklyn, New York, USA, is ranked no.6 heavyweight in the world by BoxRec and no.2 in America.
Based on his record, 20 of his 23 wins are by KO and his knockout ratio stands at 83%.
His form of style is hunting and finishing his opponents when he can land a shot.
His weight is also a big factor considering the fact that he weighs in 300 pounds plus on fight night.
Fighters that are usually big in size tend to be the swarmer style kind of fighters and trade on the inside.
Based on the Compubox statistics review, Miller throws around 66 punches and lands 22 of his punches. This a higher rate of activity and accurate level than Joshua.
Another plus point for Miller is that he throws around 41 of his power punches and lands at 16 with a connect percentage of 40%. The attempts are almost double the amount of the average heavyweight (24 thrown).
However one should be aware that Millers’ opponents have landed 38% of their power shots against him.
For many boxing fans particularly those in the UK, it might not be a compatible bout to view and be excited about. Despite what the data says, Miller has never a strong 240 plus knockout artist like Joshua. A lot of people would’ve been more excited and thrilled had the opponent been Whyte, Fury or Wilder. However one cannot deny the selling point of AJ and the kind of numbers he draws. At Madison Square Garden, the home arena of boxing will be a fantastic debut for the Briton.
Wilder Believes Fury Rematch Close, Joshua Will Be Next
Deontay Wilder is expecting his rematch with Tyson Fury to be made soon, then he says he will take on Anthony Joshua.
Speaking to UK radio station Talksport Wilder said the deal for the rematch is all but confirmed. Rumours are suggesting an April 27th showdown.
“Unless Fury backs out if it, or anything of that sort of nature, it’s definitely going to happen again.” Wilder said.
“But to my understanding, as of right now, everything is good. It’s looking like maybe Vegas, maybe Barclays Centre in New York, who knows?”
A lot of UK fans had been hoping to see the rematch take place at a stadium in the UK, Wembley, Old Trafford and the Millenium Stadium had all been mentioned as possible venues however Wilder explained why the fight will take place back in the States.
“It will definitely be back here, our pay-per-view prices are just way higher than over in the UK.
“You guys pay only like $25, but we can go from $50 to $100 easy and that’s with everything!”
Moving on to Anthony Joshua, Wilder is ready to take him on if he gets past Fury, for a shot to unify the heavyweight division.
“If he is ready, I am ready,” Wilder said, “like I said, he (got to) be fair, it’s got to be right down and that is the thing about it.
“They thought they were going to be the only people and everybody has to abide by their rules and rotate around them.
“But we had to show them! I had to grab my career and I had to go and do my own thing and that’s what I’m doing ”
Whyte Eyeing Breazeale After Joshua Talks Fail
By: Michael Kane
With a fight against Anthony Joshua seemingly now not going ahead, Dillian Whyte hopes to fight Dominic Breazeale.
April 20th at the O2 Arena in London has been booked by Matchroom Promotions and it is likely we will see Whyte take centre stage at the venue where he has headlined the last three events.
Photo Credit: Anthony Fowler Twitter Account
Whyte had been in the running to face Joshua at Wembley Satdium on April 13th. That event now looks likely to be cancelled with Joshua heading Stateside to make his U.S debut against Jarrell Miller in June at Madison Square Garden in New York.
“The Joshua fight is dead. It is not happening at the minute, so we move on,” Whyte told Sky Sports.
“The good thing is I am in a position where I have got options. We wanted the fight, I think they wanted the fight as well but sometimes negotiations break down.
“I believe I have a certain value, bring a certain value to the fight. I need belief that this is what he wants to give me.”
“Negotiations in business are very difficult. The fans don’t really see the ins and outs of that. We move on.” he continued.
When asked who he is likely to face, Whyte answered, “I will fight April 20 here (the O2) hopefully against Dominic Breazeale, Alexander Povetkin, Luis Ortiz or one of those guys. Let’s see what Eddie can deliver in the next couple of days.”
If Whyte had to pick one, which one would it be?
“I would fight Dominic Breazeale because he is a big guy, only lost once and he is WBC mandatory challenger.”
“Even though I am number one for almost two years, he is number three and the mandatory, I don’t understand! We want to get to the bottom of that situation once and for all!”
WBC Orders Wilder-Fury Rematch
By: Sean Crose
As expected, the World Boxing Council is ordering a rematch between it’s heavyweight champion, Deontay Wilder, and Tyson Fury, the man he fought to a draw last December in what is already being considered a classic bout. Per the WBC:
“Consistent with the WBC Board of governors voting regarding the direct rematch between WBC champion Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury, the WBC is hereby notifying both camps that the free negotiation period is opened and if there is no agreement between the parties a purse bid will be conducted by the WBC on Tuesday February 5th .
The WBC has modified the 70-30 split and has confirmed a 60-40 split in favor of the champion Wilder considering the market value of Fury.”
The announcement, which arrived on Thursday, came as little surprise to the fight world. In fact, talks between the two camps are already reported to have begun. The first battle between the two undefeated giants was truly a contest of skill and will, as the slippery Fury was able to avoid the hard hitting Wilder for large portions of the fight – until being dropped twice. The second knockdown, which occurred in the last round, say Fury flat on his back, seemingly done. Somehow, however, the enormous Englishman was able to get back on his feet and finish the round strongly.
The fight, of course, ended up being a draw, with many – though certainly not all – feeling that Fury had done enough to win. The controversy, coupled with the wild knockdown and recovery of Fury after over half an hour of the two fighters essentially playing cat and mouse, almost begged for a rematch. To make things even more enticing, the two larger than life heavyweights, who stand between six and a half and seven feet tall, have personalities to match their statures.
Lost in all of this is heavyweight multi-titlist Anthony Joshua, who, like Fury, is an undefeated Englishman. A staggeringly huge draw in his native country, Joshua has yet to fight in America, where the second Wilder-Fury fight, if it comes to fruition, may likely take place. Although Joshua holds most of the major titles in the division, Wilder’s WBC belt is arguably the most well regarded and well known. On top of that, Fury has a claim to the lineal championship due to the fact that he bested long reigning heavyweight king Wladimir Klitshcko in 2015, making Fury “the man who beat the man.” In other words, there’s no undisputed ruler of the heavyweights at the moment, which makes the once bland weight category more intriguing and interesting than it has been in perhaps a generation.
Better Chance of Joshua Fighting Fury than Wilder According to Hearn
By: Michael Kane
According to Matchroom supremo, Eddie Hearn, there is more chance of Anthony Joshua fighting Tyson Fury at Wembley in April than a fight against WBC champ Deontay Wilder.
It would seem tentative negotiations are taking place between all the interested parties, with a match up between any two of the three likely to be welcomed by fans.
As it stands the most likely fight to take place is a rematch between Wilder and Fury, with Las Vegas or New York appearing to be the favoured locations, disappointing the UK fans who had hoped for the rematch in one of the UK’s football stadiums.
Hearn however has said both Wilder and Fury have been offered the fight with Joshua.
“Well, to say Deontay Wilder’s camp has gone quiet, that’s saying it lightly,” Hearn told Sky Sports News. “Probably up to six unanswered emails now.
“In fact, I sent one a couple of days ago, saying I just want to check these haven’t gone into your Spam items.
“It is frustrating because you walk out there on the street ‘When’s he going to fight Deontay Wilder?’ It’s like, whenever they want it, but sometimes the public want to believe a fighter on Instagram all day.
“If they wanted the fight, they would talk to me. They’re not even talking to us. We’ve made offers, we’ve made percentage splits. Everything we can do, to try and make that fight.
“I think right now, there’s more chance of fighting Tyson Fury. There’s a man that knows he can have this fight, if he wants it. I’ve spoken to him. He knows if he wants to fight Joshua, it can happen April 13.”
Dillian Whyte and Jarrell Miller are two other names that have been mentioned to face Joshua, it appears Whyte wasn’t happy with the deal offered. There has also been rumours that Anthony Joshua may not appear at Wembley in April but instead make a debut in America, most likely against Miller.
“There’s Dillian Whyte, there’s Jarrell Miller, but Joshua is back from holiday, he’s started training now, he wants to know,” said Hearn. “We’ve probably got 10 days to two weeks before we officially have to pull the trigger.
“All those guys that I’ve mentioned, particularly Wilder, Fury and Whyte – that fight is there for them.
“What I can tell you is, Dillian, I was with him this morning. He wants a great deal to fight Joshua. I don’t blame him for that. He’s been through a hard road to get where he is to No 1.
“He can wait and become mandatory at some point, but if Dillian Whyte wants to fight for the world heavyweight title on April 13, there is the opportunity for him to do so, right now.
“It’s almost like a race against time, particularly for those three, Wilder, Fury and Whyte. They’ve all had offers, they could all sign now today, and get the fight. But do they want the fight? I believe the offers, some have been made, some are about to be improved, it’s put up or shut up time.
“You want to win these four title belts, you believe you can beat Anthony Joshua, then let’s go, but everyone wants to negotiate, and rightly so.”
Will We See Anthony Joshua Take on Tyson Fury?
By: Michael Kane
Will we see Anthony Joshua take on Tyson Fury this year? Both fighters are with different promoters and different UK PPV channels so trying to put the fight together could prove problematic.
Fury’s promoter, Frank Warren has suggested that both Sky and BT Sport could show the fight as a PPV.
“In the UK. You could go to Cardiff, they have a roof on the stadium. That should be summer, outdoors at a football stadium and would sell it out 10 times over,” Warren told the BBC recently.
“It would grip the country – one of those events that transcends the back pages. Everybody would be talking about it.
“It will be a pay-per-view event because the fighters will want to maximise their income, you can understand that. It’s very easy (to make) this fight (if it’s 50-50).
“When I say 50/50, let Sky and BT Sport Box Office both have it. Take all the obstacles away like they do in the States. The fans want the fight.
“If both TV channels are showing it, that means the boxers’ incomes are going to be more. It’s a no-brainer.”
However an other obstacle is the rivalry between Warren and Joshua’s promoters, father and son team, Barry and Eddie Hearn who run Matchroom Boxing.
Warren continues, “Anthony Joshua is a business. He makes money. It doesn’t matter who he fights, they can fill up Wembley.
“They (Matchroom Boxing) have a seven year business plan, which is filling up Wembley twice a year and it’s a cash cow. I get that! Barry (Hearn) is an accountant by trade. That’s not what the fans want!”
There is no doubt that UK fans would love an all British clash between the two heavyweights however as always politics may stop the fight from ever happening.
With an April date already booked by Matchroom Boxing for Wembley, it’s unlikely we will see Joshua take on either Deontay Wilder or Tyson Fury. In fact we might not even see Joshua appearing at Wembley, with reports now suggesting a fight with Jarrell Miller will take place Stateside to introduce Joshua to the U.S market.
This could leave a Wilder – Fury 2 fight to take place and once again overshadow Anthony Joshua who has been the beacon for British and Heavyweight boxing in recent years.
Joshua Franco: “I Want All The Champions”
By: Sean Crose
Joshua Franco has but one loss on his record. Now the Texan has a chance to even the score. For the 14-1-1 Franco will be facing off against the 12-2-1 Emmanuel Fernandez (the man who bested him last March) at the Toyota Center in Houston for the NABF Bantamweight title on the 19th of this month. Winning the belt, of course, can lead to bigger things. Yet Franco makes it clear that the NABF title itself is nothing to sneeze at. “Even having that title itself,” he says, “that’s a big accomplishment in boxing.” Interestingly enough, Franco is interested in becoming top dog at Junior Bantamweight, where some very notable names reside.
“I don’t have a problem making 115,” he says, “115 is what I have my eyes on right now.” Some of Franco’s neighbors at Junior Bantamweight will be none other than Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez, and Srisaket Sor Rungvisai, two of the biggest names in the entire sport of boxing. “I’m really just focusing on the champions at 115,” Franco claims. The man is clearly hungry. “Right now at 115, I want all the champions,” he says. “Whoever has the belts I feel I can compete and even dominate.” First, though, there’s the matter of Fernandez.
Even though Franco’s last fight ended up being a draw against Oscar Negrete, he’s a man willing to learn from his mistakes. “I learned the hard way,” he says of the first Fernandez throwdown. After dropping Fernandez, Joshua claims his corner told him to simply break his man down. He didn’t listen, and the results ended up speaking for themselves. “To be honest,” he claims, “I feel like I got a little bit winded.” Franco doesn’t intend to make the same mistakes twice. “Just training even harder,” says the fighter. “I’m pushing myself to the limit.”
Franco also wants to make a good impression. “The draws,” he says, “they don’t give me the excitement that a win does…I’m going to be more dominant.” A plus for Franco, who is backed by noted and powerful Golden Boy Promotions, is that he’ll be on a major card for the Fernandez rematch. For the main event that evening in Houston will be the Jaime Munguia-Takeshi Inoue WBO Super Welterweight title fight. “People will get to know me better,” he says of the opportunity to be on cards of note. “Right now,” he says, “being on big cards is probably what’s good for me.” Ultimately, however, Franco feels winning a title will be the best thing for him in the future. “Just get a world title,” he says for his plan for 2019.
Franco-Fernandez will be aired live on DAZN streaming service as part of the Munguia-Inoue card on January 19th at 8:00 PM Eastern Standard Time.
Somebody’s 0 Has Got to Go: The Top Three Fights Fans Want to See
By: Oliver McManus
“Somebody’s 0 has got to go”, it’s possibly the most used phrase in modern boxing. Mind you, if David Diamante has his way it will soon become “let’s nix a nil” but the premise remains the same, two unbeaten fighters putting their records on the line in, hopefully, guts-and-glory encounters.
Don’t get me wrong, a loss doesn’t make you a bad fighter and beating an unbeaten man doesn’t, equally, make you a star player in the sport. As we’ve seen recently there have been a fair few damp squibs when it comes to unbeaten vs unbeaten – Andrade vs Kautondokwa, anyone?
Nonetheless there are plenty of mouth-watering fights in prospect and these are three fights I want to see, at world level, where someone’s 0 has got to go…
Anthony Joshua vs Oleksandr Usyk – Heavyweight
Where better place to kick off than in the heavyweight division? Anthony Joshua has had things pretty much his own way at the top of the game since winning his first world title – sanctioned by the IBF- in 2016. Since that capitulation of Charles Martin, Joshua has fought in six world title bouts and added the WBA, WBO and IBO straps to his collection.
With a touted fight against Deontay Wilder falling by the wayside – take whoever’s side you want on that thorny issue – Joshua is next out on April 13th, at Wembley, with an opponent yet to be scheduled in.
But I’ll be honest, the tag of undisputed aside, I’d much rather see AJ in with the man who holds all of the cruiserweight belts and, arguably, one of the best in the world pound for pound. Usyk seems to me, and many others, the toughest challenge that Joshua can face.
Technically he is sublime and he possesses the heavyweight power required to take Joshua into deep water but, let’s not forget, Usyk has amateur pedigree in the heavier division so it’s not like he’s inexperienced at the weight. Even having said that experience wouldn’t be an issue for someone of such natural quality as Usyk for his fight IQ and ring-ability transcends weight classes.
Coming off the back of a breezy fight against Tony Bellew in which, if we’re honest, he never looked out of control the natural step is for Usyk to go up to heavyweight. Joshua, we know, is searching for “legacy defining” fights and a bout against Oleksandr Usyk is about as big as they come.
The fight seems the most realistic, out of all the big heavyweight contests, with Eddie Hearn taking an active involvement in the promotion of the Ukrainian powerhouse so, fingers crossed, we could see a blockbuster event next year.
Winner of Errol Spence Jnr and Mikey Garcia vs Terence Crawford – Welterweight
Announced last week is the fight that, if we’re honest, made no real sense. Mikey Garcia was the man we all wanted to see fight Vasyl Lomachenko and Errol Spence was the champion looking to unify with Terrence Crawford.
The IBF Welterweight title will be on line come March 16th with Garcia looking to become a five weight champion in his 40th fight. A frighteningly skilled boxer, the California native has continually proved his credentials with a frightening knockout power.
In his last three fights Garcia has been extended the distance but has boxed with class throughout the 36 rounds, controlling the pace of the fight and manouvering his way out of danger with a comprehensive ease.
Errol Spence Jnr goes into the bout with an obvious weight advantage – fighting 12lbs heavier than the division in which Garcia actively holds a world title. 2 years the younger man, Spence burst onto the scene in 2016 with knockout victories over Chris Algieri and Leonard Bundu.
Having captured the IBF crown with a ferocious victory against Kell Brook, in Sheffield, the Texas-man has defended the belt twice in equally terrifying fashion. A non-stop work rate with continual punch output, if you let the champion unfurl his hands then you’re going to be in trouble.
And whilst the question of weight will loom over the bout until fight night, Garcia is a consummate professional and an outstanding athlete. For a man trying to prove his ability in the welterweight division, there could be no better way to silence the critics than claiming a world title in your first fight so that’s where Terence Crawford comes into play.
Errol Spence is the man that people wanted to see in a unification class with Bud, they would produce a scintillating fight. If Mikey Garcia is able to overcome such a challenge then he will have instantaneously justified getting a fight with the WBO champion.
All roads lead to unification, or so they… bring it on!
Artur Beterbiev vs Dmitry Bivol – Light Heavyweight
We’ll deal with the younger boxer first in Dmitry Bivol who ticked over towards the back of 2014 with a Bronze Medal at the 2008 Youth World Championships and a Gold Medal at the 2013 World Combat Games. A two time Russian national champion with a record of 268-15, his amateur pedigree was impressive but paled in comparison to his counterpart.
As a professional, though, the 27 year old really turned up the heat by claiming the first, major, belt of his career in just his fifth fight. The knockout power we all enjoy was evident from the first second of his debut but, with that, he’d find opponents looking to hold and just survive through the early phases. Not that that mattered, Bivol has always found ways of punishing his opponent.
Even when he has been stretched the distance – three times in 14 fights – the Kyrgyzstan-born man has always looked in complete control with an array of power punches as well as technical skill. Of course we’ll all remember his fierce one-punch knockout over, admittedly over-matched, Trent Broadhurst that saw Bivol claimed champion.
Successful defences against Sullivan Barrera and Isaac Chilemba have followed – he next fights Jean Pascal on the 24th – but surely the Russian will be eying up the options for unification come the turn of the year.
Beterbiev, on the other hand, turned pro in the middle of 2013 and initially built up a strong following in Canada – the elite amateur (World Champion & runner up, two-time European champion) had moved to Montreal in order to purse his professional ambitions.
At 5 and 0 he stepped up to face Tavoris Cloud – a former IBF champion – and dealt with the threat of the American, coming off a world title loss, in convincing fashion. The momentum from this bout seemed to follow as Beterbiev looked to fight better opponents at every opportunity possible.
A refreshing attitude of “fight who’s in front of me and knock them out” has ensured success with all thirteen of his wins coming via an early stoppage. A grizzly fighter, that’s the best way to describe it, Beterbiev never looks the fastest of opponents but, boy, does he have vicious punch power.
Typically standing with his hands at shoulder level, the 33 year old stands ready to pounce and is mature enough not to go out all-guns-blazing. The IBF champion won his title against Enrico Koelling last November and, in a fight that ended in the 12th, boxed patiently and calmly to do so.
Two unbeaten Russian powerhouses, slugging it out to unify light heavyweight world titles… what more could you ask for?
Big Baby Miller Feels He Has “To Beat A Brit,” To Get To Joshua
By: Sean Crose
“I have to beat a Brit,” says undefeated heavyweight Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller, “if I do that, a lot will change.” Miller, who will be facing Bogdan Dinu on November 17th in Kansas, is looking to land a match against heavyweight kingpin Anthony Joshua, who is now a huge star in England.” When you are high risk, low reward,” says Miller, “people will make excuses not to fight you and the fans will buy into it.” Joshua, who can sell out stadiums in Britain, has a line of potential opponents hungry to face him, among them American standout Deontay Wilder.
As Matchroom Boxing, which is affiliated with Miller, states: “Anthony Joshua returns to Wembley Stadium in London on April 13 to put his IBF, WBA and WBO straps on the line.” Miller would love the chance to face Joshua, of course, but understands that fight may not happen – at least not on that date. And so Miller is not afraid to set his sights on other foes. “I am not afraid of Dillian,” Miller says of another potential Joshua oppoenent, Dilian Whyte. “I’m afraid of no man. If AJ is not ready to face me with a title, then I’ll go and whoop Dillian’s butt. It’ll help my profile in Britain.”
“He’s a clown,” Miller says of Whyte, who has already lost to Joshua once before. “Nobody is afraid of him. He’s got a win over Lucas Browne and that’s it. For him to call people punks, he’s deluded, I’ve fought three World title contenders back to back. He turned down Mariusz Wach twice and he didn’t really want to fight Duhaupas, he’s naive.” Miller is clearly a student of the fight game. ““The big fights take some maneuvering and finessing,” he says, “so building my profile, winning the regular title and getting into a mandatory spot is going to help me in that situation.”
“I think I will definitely be in a spot to have an AJ or Deontay Wilder fight later in the year,” he says, “so I need to get this win in Kansas and stay busy, focused, injury free and ready.” Miller knows it would be unwise to overlook Dinu, an 18-0 Romanian, with 14 knockouts on his resume. “Bogdan is aggressive,” the 20-0-1 Brooklyn natives says, “but that’s against guys that want to survive…he’s going to try to move against me, everybody does, but then they all end up running for their lives – and they can only run for so long.”
Miller, who has won all but two of his bouts by knockout, will be one of the highlights of Saturday’s card at the Kansas Star Arena in Mulvane, Kansas. Claressa Shields will also be fighting, as will Brandon Rios. DAZN will be airing the festivities live starting at 10 PM Eastern Standard Time.