Can Jarrell Miller Derail Anthony Joshua's American Dream?

Can the underdog Jarrell Miller beat Heavyweight Champion and favorite Anthony Joshua?
Oddschecker
Sun, February 17, 7:00 PM EST

New York City's Madison Square Garden will play host to Anthony Joshua's American debut on June 1, with home hope Jarrell Miller selected as the man to challenge the Briton for his IBF, WBA and WBO heavyweight titles.

 

The unified heavyweight champion has shot to superstardom back in his native homeland, regularly selling out huge venues across the UK, including his blockbuster Fight of the Year knockout victory over the legendary Wladimir Klitschko back in April 2017.

 

In front of a post-war record crowd of 90,000 rapturous fight fans at the outdoor London venue, 'AJ' rallied to a highly dramatic 11th-round stoppage success over the Ukrainian.

 

Further mammoth events took place across England and Wales, as he also overcame all of Carlos Takam and Joseph Parker at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff before halting Russian Alexander Povetkin on his return to Wembley, the scene of his most famous triumph to date.

 

First Fight Stateside for British Hero

 

But while his reputation is soaring back in the UK, Joshua's stock is yet to reach the same levels across the pond in the United States, with fellow Brit Tyson Fury having recently hogged the headlines with his incredible 12-round epic against America's currently reigning WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder.

 

However, the 29-year-old will now have a great opportunity to showcase his credentials in front of a highly demanding American audience for the first time this coming summer when he tackles 'Big Baby' Miller at 'the Mecca of Boxing'.

 

Joshua will enter the ring on June 1 as an overwhelming -800.00 favorite for what will be his first appearance outside of the UK in his professional career.

 

The 29-year-old has faced somewhat of a backlash over the choice of opponent for his next ring outing, which will see him perform on American territory for the first time in the paid ranks, but Miller is far from a pushover.

 

Could Untested Miller Be Surprise Package?

 

Miller, the -500.00 underdog, has never fought for a world title before and his resume to date may not be the most eye-catching of all the contenders plying their trade in the division. But the now 30-year-old challenger does possess a solid skillset for such an overwhelmingly large fighter.

 

The Brooklyn native will undoubtedly be the heaviest opponent 'AJ' has faced so far, with the gigantic contender having weighed in at 315 lbs in his last contest when he stopped Romanian foe Bogdan Dinu inside just three rounds at the Kansas Star Arena in Mulvane late last November.

 

That is almost 70 lbs heavier than what the British champion weighed in at ahead of his win over Alexander Povetkin last September on home turf. Miller will take to the ring so far unbeaten in his career, with the only setback being a 2013 draw with compatriot Joey Dawejko during the early days of his time as a professional.

 

AJ, therefore, represents a huge step up in class for Miller, with Joshua now boasting a record of 22-0 with an impressive 21 knockouts – and the Briton is a best price of -200.00 to finish inside the distance. Tough New Zealander Parker is the only man yet to bring the unified heavyweight kingpin the 12-round distance to date in their March 2018 match-up.

 

Joshua Accused of Ducking Wilder and Fury

 

The backlash Joshua has faced from fans and many analysts alike stems from the seeming lack of motivation in making the bouts against the two biggest and best names aside from himself: Wilder and Fury.

 

Knockout artist Wilder has previously called for what would arguably be the most prestigious fight in the sport against Joshua, while Fury has shown no fear in stepping up to face anyone despite such a long lay-off from boxing to deal with personal troubles.

 

Wilder and Fury are set to go head to head once again in a highly anticipated rematch this year, with their initial encounter having been an incredibly entertaining affair at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.

 

It looked as if Fury had done enough to prevail over the distance and dethrone the long-standing WBC titleholder last year, but a controversial and somewhat dubious decision saw the ringside officials call the bout a draw.

 

Fury and his camp were outraged, while Wilder seemed content with such a result at the conclusion of a thrilling final round, in which the British challenger dramatically got off the canvas from a devastating knockdown to survive the remainder of their meeting.

 

Both men could still prove to be prosperous opponents for 'AJ' later this year or, a lot more likely, in 2020. But he must first avoid a stunning upset at the hands of rising contender Miller, who will attempt to derail Joshua's American dream when the pair collide in the latest heavyweight title showdown at Madison Square Garden on June 1.

 

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