Jarrell Miller may have just purchased his first home, but judging from Tuesday’s words and actions he’s in the market for more real estate inside the head of unified heavyweight boxing champion Anthony Joshua.
Miller (23-0-1, 20 KOs), who will face Joshua (22-0, 21 KOs) at Madison Square Garden on June 1, blitzed his British foe with salvos both physical and verbal. The 300-plus pound Brooklynite delivered a forceful shove at the start of Tuesday’s news conference at the World’s Most Famous Arena, knocking the champ back several feet. Officials had to take several minutes to restore order and settle both boxers into their seats.
Even before the presser began, Miller relished the chance to trash the WBA, IBF and WBO champion in front of a small group of media members.
"He’s a fraud, man," Miller said. "The thing about New York is we can smell B.S. a mile away. … And people [are] gonna start seeing that the more they start talking to him. You can see he’s not authentic."
When it came time for Miller, nicknamed "Big Baby," to speak in the presence of his opponent, he was introspective. He noted the many people close to him who’ve died this year and his difficult upbringing. All the while, Joshua patiently listened on the other side of Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn, who stood at the center lectern between the hulking heavyweights — Joshua stands at 6-6, while Miller is 6-4.
Miller would offer Joshua no such courtesy, talking over the often polite champ with mocking Britishisms. Expletives flew from both men as Hearn fruitlessly attempted to keep things moderately civil.
Joshua, who in his own roundtable with reporters before the event had referred to Miller as a "disease" for his negativity toward other heavyweights, and clearly has contempt for Big Baby. He dismissed Miller as a "washed-up kickboxer" and "PED user," a reference to his opponent’s nine-month suspension in 2014 for testing positive for methylhexaneamine while headlining a Glory kickboxing event in California.
"You put any heavyweight in here, [he’ll] cut him in half," Joshua said as Miller tried to talk over him. "He’s full of [expletive]."
The two heavy hitters don’t see eye to eye, but both agree their bout will not go the distance. Miller wouldn’t entertain the idea of anything but a knockout victory, while Joshua predicted a seventh-round knockout.
"He can’t go the second half of a fight," Joshua said.