The year 2019 was supposed to be a big one for Jarrell Miller, who was set to face Anthony Joshua for the unified heavyweight titles in the summer. The build to the fight was spicy, and Miller was given a legitimate shot at victory by some experts.
But instead of making good on his opportunity, Miller was disgraced when he tested positive for multiple banned substances and received a six-month suspension from the New York State Atheltic Commission. The Brooklyn star was replaced by Andy Ruiz, who would upset Joshua at Madison Square Garden.
Incredibly, Miller would test positive again in 2020 and didn’t compete for over three years. He returned to action in 2022 and has since posted three wins.
The fighter known as “Big Baby” now looks to reclaim his status as a top contender when he faces British fighter Daniel Dubois in Saudi Arabia on December 23.
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The Joshua fight wasn’t the first time Miller failed a drug test.
In 2014, fighting for GLORY Kickboxing, Miller was suspended by the California State Athletic Commission after he tested positive for methylhexaneamine.
Despite the number of substances he was accused of ingesting prior to the Joshua fight, Miller refused to admit any wrongdoing in the months that followed.
“I have never, ever willingly taken a steroid for performance-enhancing purposes,” Miller told Fight Network via ESPN. “Did I take something for healing properties, for injuries? Yes, I have. But to win a fight, and during a training camp? No, I have never done that.
“Nobody can be more outraged than me. I’m the one that’s lost millions of dollars. I’m the one that’s had his career on the line. But I have to think about it with a straight mind. I have to figure it out. Sit down with my team, get everything in order, and get everything done in the right way.”
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After his failed drug test against Joshua, Miller signed with Top Rank and was scheduled to face Jerry Forrest in 2020. However, he once again failed a pre-fight drug test and was suspended by the Nevada Athletic Commission. On that occasion, he received a two-year ban.
Removed from the Top Rank brand, he wouldn’t return to action until June 2022.
Miller, 35, moved around various promotions after losing out on Top Rank and Matchroom deals. He has outpointed Ariel Esteban Bracamonte and scored knockout wins over Derek Cardenas and Lucas Browne.
The last time Miller was in the ring, he competed on the Floyd Mayweather vs. John Gotti III undercard on June 11. In an exhibition, he faced Antonio Zepeda in an underwhelming affair.