Jarrell Miller showed us that yes, he can carry 304 pounds for the full 12-rounds last night in New York in winning a wide unanimous decision over a very tough and game Johann Duhaupas. Miller, who improved to 21-0-1(18) with the win – scores were 119-109 twice and a closer 117-111 – might have earned himself a shot at WBA/IBF/WBO heavyweight champ Anthony Joshua.
Still, Duhaupas, who fell to 37-5(24) sure made Miller work hard for his victory. The older man (37 to Miller’s 29) and the lighter man (244 for the Frenchman) was able to get through a rough couple of opening rounds, during which “Big Baby” unloaded all he could in search of the finish. A low blow bought “Reptile” some breathing space and the fight was soon into the middle rounds.
Duhaupas, a man with a proven chin, having gone 11 hard rounds with Deontay Wilder a few years back (Wilder saying how the warrior from France has thus far given him his toughest-ever fight) was able to take everything and anything that Miller threw at him. At times, though not enough, Duhaupas threw back and some thrilling trading took place.
Swollen around the eye, Duhaupas was a tired fighter in the closing rounds, but then so was Miller; who was noticeably breathing through his mouth. Duhaupas seemed to turn his ankle in the penultimate round, crying out in real pain. Showing incredible heart, the Frenchman fought it out in the final three-minutes, again trading with Miller; who bled from the mouth.
All in all a good fight, with a gutsy effort from big underdog Duhaupas; a man most fans were saying beforehand would get taken out in brutal fashion. But did Miller impress? With the lack of a KO win, it’s possible some fans will feel a little let down by the Brooklyn giant. On the plus side, in going 12 rounds, although tired at the end, Miller showed he has stamina. Miller was still pumping out leather in the championship rounds, too.
Maybe Miller isn’t the big puncher some of us felt he was, but it may not matter. Miller is a big, strong man, he has fast hands, he throws out plenty of punches and he has not yet been visibly hurt in a fight. If he has a great chin, Miller could be a tough proposition for any heavyweight; Joshua included.
A great talker, Miller has been calling for a shot at AJ for some time now and if Joshua doesn’t fight Wilder next (unlikely) and if that mandatory with Alexander Povetkin doesn’t take place (this fight looking more likely for the British star) maybe Eddie Hearn will risk putting his star heavyweight in with the biggest (literally) heavyweight out there today.
Can Miller upset Joshua? Can Joshua flatten Miller? It’s an interesting fight, if not the big one we all want to see.
As for the brave Duhaupas, in defeat he proved a few people wrong and can perhaps come again.