Hearn: I Just Couldn’t Sign Jarrell Miller After Stone-Cold Cheating

Even after Jarrell Miller’s performance-enhancing drug debacle, Eddie Hearn considered forgiving the huge heavyweight contender.

Hearn has plenty of heavyweights under contract for Miller to fight. Rescheduling his fight against Anthony Joshua would’ve provided plenty of drama for that promotion, just the type of salacious spectacle Hearn enjoys presenting to boxing fans.

Ultimately, however, even Hearn couldn’t bring himself to sign the besmirched Miller to a promotional contract after Miller tested positive for three PEDs and ruined his shot at Joshua’s titles last spring. The transgressions of Brooklyn’s Miller afforded Andy Ruiz Jr. the chance to pull off one of the biggest upsets in boxing history, a seventh-round technical knockout of the heavily favored Joshua on June 1 at Madison Square Garden in New York.

Miller’s new multi-fight promotional deal with Bob Arum’s Top Rank Inc. was announced Wednesday.

The 31-year-old Miller (23-0-1, 20 KOs) hasn’t fought since he knocked out Romania’s Bogdan Dinu (19-2, 15 KOs) in November 2018. The date and opponent for his Top Rank debut haven’t been announced, but Hearn acknowledged during a recent interview with BoxingScene.com that he will watch with interest from afar.

“I wish him all the best,” said Hearn, managing director for Matchroom Boxing, Joshua’s promoter. “He was desperate to sign with us. I just couldn’t do it, couldn’t do it. It didn’t feel right. I know I can be hypocritical at times, but this guy failed three drug tests, for three different supplements – or not even supplements. He injected in his ass. You know, stone-cold cheating. And there was no ban. But it’s over. It’s done. I wish him all the best. You know, I would always shake his hand and smile at him. But I felt like he let me down and he let boxing down, and he tried to cheat in a fight against Anthony Joshua, who is my friend and client.

“And I couldn’t do it. I could not do it. As much as there’s some great fighters out there for him – the Joshua fight, the Dillian Whyte fight – it didn’t sit right to basically encourage this. And that’s what they’ve done by giving him a new contract, a big contract, coming off the back of failed tests for three substances. But line on the sand, I wish ‘Big Baby’ Miller all the best. Respect to him, God bless, good night. We’ll see you soon.” 

Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.