Josh Kelly-Ray Robinson added to Joshua-Ruiz

Josh Kelly will make his U.S. debut against Philadelphia’s Ray Robinson on the undercard of Anthony Joshua’s Heavyweight World title clash with Andy Ruiz Jr. at Madison Square Garden in New York on June 1, live on DAZN in the US and Sky Sports Box Office in the UK.

Sunderland star Kelly (9-0, 6 KOs) outclassed the previously undefeated Pole Przemyslaw Runowski on his big ring return at The O2 in London last month, flooring the gutsy challenger three times to defend his WBA International title with a classy unanimous verdict after winning all ten rounds.

Kelly was due to face former World Champion David Avanesyan on the undercard of Kell Brook vs. Michael Zerafa in Sheffield, but an illness scuppered a December dust-up between the pair. A showdown with the now European Champion is at the top of Kelly’s wish list should he come through his test against Robinson.

Robinson (24-3-1, 12 KOs) has lost only three times in his 28-fight career, one of those losses coming to current WBC Welterweight World Champion Shawn Porter in 2010, and the 33-year-old southpaw earned an impressive draw in his last outing in March against the undefeated and World rated Egidijus Kavaliauskas.

“To be boxing at the Mecca of boxing Madison Square Garden is pretty serious isn’t it,” said Kelly. “I’ve never been there before so I’m going to enjoy the experience and put a performance on. To be fighting at a venue like that so early on in my career is another box ticked on my journey.

“Things change and titles switch hands but the majority of World titles are held in the US at the moment so I could end up boxing there a lot more in the future. I just take things fight by fight and I never overlook anyone because I’d be doing myself and my opponent an injustice.

“Robinson is a very good opponent. He’s a good boxer with an awkward southpaw style so it’s another good test for me. It’s going to be a great fight and a night to enjoy. I get a lot of support from people in the US so it’s nice to have an opportunity to put on a performance in front of them.

“What happened with the Avanesyan fight was unfortunate but it’s a fight that’s still 100% on my radar. Adam has got a plan for it and I’ll just go with what he says. It’s definitely more than likely going to take place. June 1 is going to be the start of something big.”

“This is a great fight and a huge step-up for Josh on the biggest stage possible,” said promoter Eddie Hearn. “Robinson clearly won last time out and is an accomplished fighter that will test him in every department. This is the stage for him to shine, in front of a sold out MSG broadcast all over the World – June 1 we will really find out what PBK is all about.”

Adam Smith, Head of Sky Sports Boxing, said: “Josh Kelly is one of the hottest talents in Britain – and Madison Square Garden is a perfect venue for him to showcase his skills.

“We’ve covered Kelly’s exciting career from the very start. ‘PBK’ can now show American fans why he’s a name to watch in that red-hot Welterweight division.

“It will be a bumper evening of boxing as Katie Taylor bids to become the undisputed World Lightweight champion, and then AJ can mark his US debut with a bang against Andy Ruiz Jr!”

Kelly and Robinson clash on a huge night of action at Madison Square Garden where Joshua’s World title defense against Ruiz is supported by Irish sensation Katie Taylor clashing with Delfine Persoon for the undisputed Women’s World Lightweight championship and Chris Algieri and Tommy Coyle meeting in a crossroads Lightweight fight – with more undercard fights to be announced shortly.


Anthony Joshua on Miller: ‘The spirits know who you are and what you are about’

Heavyweight contender Jarrell Miller was about to have the biggest fight of his life on June 1 when he was slated to face unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua at Madison Square Garden. However, Miller was not able to stay clean enough to get to fight night.

Miller reportedly tested positive three times for banned substances and was denied a license by the New York State Athletic Commission. Miller was also suspended six months by the WBA.

Now, Joshua will battle Andy Ruiz on June 1.

Some, including WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder, believe Miller should be banned for life, but others, like Joshua, believe Miller should get a second chance.

“I know what a second chance in life gave me. I made my own mistakes. It wasn’t anything to do with drugs and cheating, but in life,” Joshua told TMZ Sports.  “I would like Miller to have a second chance at life, but if he is going to carry on the same way and he has not really, truly learned, then the powers at be up above will not give him that second chance at life. The spirits know who you are and what you are about.  If you are a good person, and you are willing to make a change, good things will come to you. If not, nothing is going to come your way.”

Obviously, Miller messed up, but unfortunately, this is not the first time he has messed up. Miller tested positive for a banned substance in 2014 when he was a kick-boxer, so you have to wonder if this is truly an isolated incident.

We have seen many fighters test positive and get second chances, and I think Miller should get the same opportunity to prove that he is a “clean” fighter. He will probably fight again, but whether he gets another shot at the title could be a different story. I’ll guess we will have to wait and see.

Ruiz on Joshua: ‘I think being so tall he fights like a big robot’

After weeks of waiting, unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua(22-0, 21 KOs) finally has an opponent. Joshua will battle Andy Ruiz(32-1, 21 KOs) on June 1 at Madison Square Garden. Ruiz will replace Jarrell Miller, who reportedly tested positive for three different banned substances.

While some believe Joshua will have no issues in this fight, Ruiz wants to become the first ever Mexican heavyweight champion and expects to get the nod on June 1.

“When I do pull out this win, everything is going to change,” Ruiz said. “I’m going to bring the titles back to Mexico; it’s going to mean everything. I’m going to be able to change my whole family’s lives; my life and all my kids. It’s a win-win situation right now, but the main thing is to win the fight and make history.”

Ruiz expects an exciting fight against Joshua, and according to Ruiz, we could see a slugfest.

“I think the fight is going toe-to-toe, two guys smashing each other’s faces,” Ruiz said. “I’m going in there to throw combinations like I’ve never done before, to improve my speed. A lot of people underestimated me, and I’m used to that. My whole life people underrated me, so I’m just going in there to take all. I’m not going in there scared, and I’m not going in there nervous, I’m going to go in there mad and to take what’s mine.

The 29-year-old Ruiz, who is coming off a stoppage victory over Alexander Dimitrenko in April, is very confident that he can take advantage of Joshua’s fighting style.

“I think being so tall he fights like a big robot,” Ruiz said. “I think with my style, my speed, my movement, I don’t think he’s fought anybody like me. It’s going to be a whole different ball game. All the guys that he’s fought, they usually run around from him. I don’t think he’s good going back. I’m going to bring the pressure, the speed, and the combinations to him.”

I think Joshua-Miller would have been the better fight, but Ruiz is not a bad replacement, and his only loss happened in 2016 against Joseph Parker, in a fight many believe he won.

Joshua is still the favorite, but Ruiz will be competitive.

Luis Ortiz: ‘Anthony Joshua, Deontay Wilder, I’m ready’

Luis Ortiz (31-1, 26 KOs) earned a unanimous decision victory over a game Christian Hammer (24-6, 14 KOs) at Barclays Center in Brooklyn on Saturday night.

Although the judges scored the fight 100-90 and 99-91 twice, both men fought through bloody noses at different points in the contest and both were stunned in a back-and-forth second round.

Ortiz, who earned his third consecutive victory since dropping a thrilling slugfest with WBC Heavyweight Champion Deontay Wilder one year ago, is now looking for another world title shot.

“The fight wasn’t what I was expecting,” said Ortiz. “It was a hard fight, and my corner really had to work with me. After I got the rhythm, I heated up a little bit. Every heavyweight out there should know that I still have it at 40-years-old. Anthony Joshua, Deontay Wilder, I’m ready.”

Obviously, if Ortiz wants to beat Wilder or Joshua, he has to fight a lot better than he did on Saturday night, but overall, he was okay with his performance.

“I fought a fight that I hadn’t for years, which is box and work,” said Ortiz. “So I’m not disappointed I didn’t knock him out because I showed some of my boxing skills tonight.”

Should be interesting to see what happens next for Ortiz. Will he get Wilder or Joshua next? Only time will tell, but if he does, he better be ready!

Photo: Stephanie Trapp/Showtime

Luis Ortiz: ‘If fighters avoid me, there’s nothing I can do about it’

Heavyweight contender Luis Ortiz is a very talented fighter, and he is a guy that is high-risk with not much reward. Ortiz, 39, is a southpaw with serious power, which means facing him won’t be an easy night for any fighter in the heavyweight division, and on Saturday night, Ortiz will continue his march to a world title when he battles Christian Hammer at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Since losing to WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder, Ortiz has stopped his last two opponents, but he knows if he continues to dominate, fighters might be reluctant to get in the ring with him.

“Whoever they put in front of me, I’m going to go in there and try to knock them out,” Ortiz said at a media workout on Wednesday. “I’m not going to change for anyone. If fighters avoid me, there’s nothing I can do about it.”

Recently, unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua said he would have some interest in Ortiz if he does not get Wilder or Tyson Fury, and while Ortiz has an interest in Joshua, the fight he really wants is a rematch with Wilder.

“If there is a chance to rematch Deontay Wilder, that’s the fight I want,” Ortiz said. “That’s the fight to make. I want to give the fans the fights they want.”

Erislandy Lara headlines the SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® triple-header as the former long-reigning champion challenges Brian Castaño and also features exciting heavyweight contender Ortiz battling former world title challenger Christian Hammer in a 10-round contest. Coverage begins at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT with once-beaten contenders Bryan De Gracia and Eduardo Ramirez squaring off for a 12-round featherweight clash.

Photo: Stephanie Trapp/SHOWTIME

Miller on Joshua: ‘He’s been backed up by every fighter he’s fought’

Unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua’s biggest test, in the ring, happened in 2017 when he beat Wladimir Klitschko. In that fight, Joshua got off the deck to stop the legendary champion to get his signature victory. Those fights are the type of battles that prepare a fighter for greatness, and Joshua is looking to be great.

The British-born Joshua(22-0, 21 KOs) has had a lot of success in the UK, but greatness comes when you take over America, which Joshua plans on doing starting June 1 against Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller(23-0, 20 KOs) at Madison Square Garden.

The 30-year-old Miller is very confident that he can beat Joshua, and according to the New York City native, Joshua has a flaw that he can take advantage of on fight night.

“He’s been backed up by every fighter he has ever fought,” Miller said. “Even Charles Martin backed him up a little bit, and Charles Martin quit. Carlos Takam, 6’1, 230 pounds, backed him up; (Alexander)Povetkin, 6’2, 230 pounds, backed him up. Everybody backs him up, so you think a 300-pound man, who has never been dropped, hurt, or stopped, is not going to back him up, and throw more punches?”

Miller is a volume punching, and it should be interesting to see how Joshua responds to his activity. However, while we have witnessed Joshua get backed up in fights, Miller has never been in the ring with a guy as talented or as strong as Joshua, which should make for an exciting night of boxing on June 1.

Listen below as Miller talks Joshua:

Anthony Joshua is willing to fight Luis Ortiz after Miller(VIDEO)

Unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua is ready to make his mark in America, and that starts on June 1 when he battles Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

The boxing public has waited for Joshua to battle WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder, but they could never agree on a fight. Also, lineal champion Tyson Fury has recently signed with Top Rank/ESPN, so a fight with him might be difficult to make for Joshua.

So, where does Joshua go if he beats Miller? Maybe, he fights Luis Ortiz.

Listen below as Joshua talks about fighting Ortiz if he does not get Wilder or Fury. He was a guest on the Breakfast Club on Power 105.1 in New York City on Wednesday.

Anthony Joshua: Mayweather, Ward don’t get the respect they deserve(VIDEO)

Floyd Mayweather and Andre Ward are all-time greats in the sport of boxing. Both fighters ended their careers undefeated, and both fighters ended their careers on top. Ward dominated the “Super Six Tournament” and  defeated  Sergey Kovalev twice, and Mayweather beat such great opponents like Manny Pacquiao, Oscar De La Hoya, Shane Mosley, and Miguel Cotto.

While bother fighters were great, it seems that they don’t get the respect they deserve, so says unified heavyweight champion, Anthony Joshua

“Look at Mayweather, he doesn’t get the respect that he deserves,” Joshua said on Wednesday at the press conference to promote his fight with Jarrell Miller. “Andre Ward, he doesn’t get the respect he deserves.”

You can nitpick and say that Ward was given a favorable decision against Sergey Kovalev, in their first fight, or Mayweather ducked fighters throughout his career or waited until fighters were past their prime, but in the end, both fighters were tremendous and they deserve the utmost respect for their accomplishments in the ring.

Right now, Joshua is trying to carve out a legacy for himself, and at this point, he is going to have to conquer America to make that happen, It starts June 1 when he battles Big Baby Miller at MSG.

Listen below as Joshua talks about getting respect in boxing:

Hearn on Joshua-Miller: ‘We are building a huge event on June 1’

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.

Joshua defends his WBA Super, IBF, WBO and IBO crowns against Miller on June 1 in the Big Apple, live on DAZN in the US and on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK – and fight fans showed their appetite to see the Briton make his American debut in the backyard of the unbeaten Brooklynite, breaking the highest grossing pre-sale in MSG boxing history inside two hours of the midday on-sale.

Tickets go on general sale at midday on Tuesday February 19 following Monday’s pre-sale for Matchroom Fight Pass members, and fans hoping to snap up the chance to see the World’s premier Heavyweight lock horns with the dangerous ‘Big Baby’ should move fast on Tuesday to avoid missing out on this blockbuster night.

“We know that AJ is a huge box office hit in the UK but to break the pre-sale record at the iconic Madison Square Garden is astounding,” said promoter Eddie Hearn. “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.”

“We are thrilled with the early excitement for tickets,” said Joel Fisher, executive vice president, MSG Marquee Events. “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.”

Miller: ‘That punk AJ is standing in the way of my dreams and on June 1 he’s getting run the hell over’

After weeks of speculation, unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua(22-0, 21 KOs) will finally make his U.S debut on June 1 against Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller at Madison Square Garden.

For Miller(23-0-1, 20 KOs), this is an opportunity to get the fight he has wanted for a long time. He went face-to-face with Joshua during a heated exchange at the launch of DAZN’s streaming service in New York City in July last year and is promising to steal the show on June 1.

“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,” Miller said. “That punk AJ is standing in the way of my dreams and on June 1 he’s getting run the hell over.”

Miller believes that Joshua is making a huge mistake by fighting him in his U.S. debut.

“AJ is making a huge mistake coming over here to fight me in my own backyard,” Miller said. “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.”

Joshua eventually had to come over the pond and fight in America, and Miller is the perfect opponent because he can help sell the fight. Britain’s Lennox Lewis conquered America, and we’ll see if Joshua can do the same.