David Haye, the former heavyweight champion, has spoken out about Jarrell Miller’s chances against Brit Anthony Joshua in their upcoming bout in New York.
Miller and Joshua came face to face at a heated press conference in New York on Tuesday, with the former hurling abuse and even pushing the current IBF, WBO and WBA belt holder.
The American has not been given much of chance ahead of the June 1 showdown but Haye believes the Brooklyn-born fighter should not be taken lightly and can ruffle some feathers.
“Believe me, Miller is a live opponent. He’ll give Joshua a hard time. He is dangerous and he has to be taken seriously," he told the Evening Standard.
“He will shock more than a few people with his boxing ability and size. I have never seen a heavyweight like him.”
“What he lacks in height [6ft 4in] he makes up for in width. He is much bigger than Joshua even though he is shorter. One shot from him and it could be lights out.
“He is undefeated and he reminds me of a young Shannon Briggs, who gave Lennox Lewis a hard night at the office in 1998, pushing him to the wire. The whole of America will be watching what Anthony can do, too, because this is his first professional fight abroad. That brings pressure.”
After speculation about a Fury and Wilder rematch swirled after their draw last December and a failure to reach an agreement with Dillian Whyte, Joshua’s promoter, Eddie Hearn, sought out the American Miller for the bout at Madison Square Garden in June.
Joshua and Hearn have had to endure some criticism about the decision to pick Miller over more established fighters but circumstances have now changed following Fury's big announcement earlier this week.
Fury has subsequently signed an £80 million deal with ESPN for rights to his next five fights, which prompted concerns the expected bout between Fury and Wilder may now be in jeopardy as latter is closely linked with rival Showtime.
Yet, Wilder’s team are confident that they may salvage the fixture with further negotiations between the two channels ongoing.
Wilder’s advisor, Shelley Finkel said: “We are hoping to make the fight and figure out how with this new relationship they have with ESPN that it can be done.
“I would want to try to make it with Showtime and ESPN.”
Even with Joshua considered a firm favourite for the June bout, Haye refuses to rule out Miller being able to use his size and skills to cause a potential upset.
Miller has an impressive record with 20 knockouts and is undefeated in his 24 fights so far but there is no doubt he is taking a huge step up to face an unbeaten, unified world champion.