LEADING American heavyweights Deontay Wilder and Jarrell Miller have a few things in common.
They love the stars and stripes, they talk a good game, and they both, at some point in 2019, would like to share a ring with Anthony Joshua, the consensus number one heavyweight on the planet.
Where the two big punchers differ, however, at least according to Miller’s co-promoter, Dmitry Salita, is in the skills department.
“I think Jarrell, just on a pure skill boxing level, would have beaten both of those guys on that night,” Salita told Sky Sports, referencing the December 1 WBC world heavyweight title fight between Wilder and Tyson Fury. “I feel that Jarrell is the best American heavyweight in the world.
“I think Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder are glued to one another for the near future, until they have a rematch. Miller versus Joshua is the next biggest fight. I don’t know in which order it goes, but those are two big, big fights in the heavyweight division.”
Having boxed three times in the last seven months, Salita expects Miller, 23-0-1 (20), to return to the ring early in the new year and continue making strides as one of the world’s main heavyweight contenders.
“One of the things about Jarrell that he’s shown is that he’s getting better with each fight,” he said. “It’s scary to think how much better he’s going to get.
“Jarrell has shown his desire to fight the best available champions and contenders. The key word here is available. We’re going to go wholly to that plan, that formula, fighting the best available fighters in the world.”
The one they really want, of course, is Joshua. The Briton owns three of the four world heavyweight belts and has an opening for someone on April 13 at London’s Wembley Stadium. It’s a void expected to be filled by Dillian Whyte, should his fellow Londoner get past Dereck Chisora on December 22, but Miller, rest assured, is waiting in the wings if they’re after a little something else.
“For Anthony Joshua, that’s the biggest fight to be made,” he said. “On a pure boxing level, that’s the biggest fight. That’s the biggest fight in the heavyweight division. One of the biggest fights in boxing, Jarrell Miller against Anthony Joshua, no doubt about it.”
According to Eddie Hearn, the chances of pairing his fighter, Anthony Joshua, with Deontay Wilder have increased exponentially following the American’s drawn WBC world heavyweight title fight against Tyson Fury on December 1.
Hearn believes had Wilder won the fight in devastating fashion he would have ended up being insufferable at the negotiating table, but now, having been held to a controversial draw, the promoter expects a more malleable ‘Bronze Bomber’ and an altogether smoother process.
“It’s now easier to make the Wilder fight vs. other circumstances,” Hearn told The Independent.
“So if Wilder would have won devastatingly, he would have been a f****** nightmare. Everyone thought he lost, but he drew – and although his stock has gone up because he is well-known, it’s not like he was this phenomenon.”
Clearly, it’s not just about Wilder’s performance. Every bit as important to a potential Wilder vs. Joshua negotiation is the reported 300,000 pay-per-view buys the American’s fight with Wilder generated in his home country.
“To do 300,000 buys is terrible, absolutely terrible,” said Hearn. “Three hundred thousand is absolutely abysmal. Dillian Whyte against Joseph Parker did more than 300,000 buys in England. I mean we’re talking about across the US. You can’t say it’s good. Canelo and Golovkin have just done 1.2 million and they’re middleweights.”