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Posted by on Jul 9, 2019 in Boxing |

If Fury wants Miller, how will New York handle licensing?

If Fury wants Miller, how will New York handle licensing?

Jarrell Miller could be in line to face Tyson Fury in New York, which opens up questions about Miller being licensed again.

With the rumor mill being busy churning, it got me thinking.

If Tyson Fury is indeed going to be gloving up in the fall — maybe October or November, with New York being the target site — and if indeed Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller were potentially in line to fight the “Gypsy King,” how would Miller’s licensing in New York be dealt with?

You recall that Miller was getting himself ready to fight Anthony Joshua on June 1 at Madison Square Garden’s big room on DAZN, when word and jaws dropped: the jumbo-sized charismatic pugilist had tested positive for a banned substance. Then other shoes dropped, as he tested positive for a total of three different banned chemicals: GW1516, EPO and HGH, all with the ability to give an athlete a hand up in training. He later admitted their presence, but attributed that to a tainted supplement, and also a tainted cocktail which was shot into his elbow to hasten healing.

Miller’s case fell into something of a gray area, because his license to box, which must be re-upped annually, had lapsed. Thus, he wasn’t under the jurisdiction of the New York State Athletic Commission. And so, persons are left wondering: if and when Miller wants to fight again, what will the procedure be in regaining a license — and vitally, if he wants to fight Fury in NY, what hoops will he have to jump?

This was the second time Miller had been flagged for a PED positive; he had been red-flagged back in 2014 in California while kickboxing.

So, I asked NYSAC this: “Rumor is Jarrell Miller will fight Tyson Fury in NYC. Can I get a sense of how NYSAC would handle his application to get licensed, in light of his positive PED tests? This is for (a big name online website). Thanks.”

I received a reply from a spokesman, who first wished me well: “We don’t comment on rumors or hypothetical questions.”

My response: “I don’t think it is out of bounds or veering into hypotheticals to ask what the policy and path forward is for the commission in handling a situation like this. I think it is an issue of transparency, and the public at large, i.e. fight fans in this case, have a right to know, whether it be for a Jarrell Miller or anyone else.”

Point taken, I was informed. “Here’s what I can tell you: When an application for a fighter comes to the Commission, it is thoroughly reviewed and vetted to determine if the applicant eligible to participate in accordance with New York State’s Laws, Rules & Regulations. This process applies to all applicants.”

There ya go. No, not much in the way of specificity. We’d have to watch how it unspools in real time to really know, I think.

Miller tested positive in March. On April 29, after he had been pulled from the Joshua fight, the WBA said they were banning Miller from their ratings until Sept. 19. Miller, the WBA said, will have to pay for VADA testing himself, and must furnish test results if he wishes to be re-inserted in the WBA ratings.

September, eh? That would mean that one “oversight” body would be weighing in, in theory, and giving Miller the “all in” signal in time for an October or November clash, maybe against Fury.

Miller is promoted by Salita Promotions and Greg Cohen. Salita told RING that there was no news to be had regarding Miller’s fighting future at the time of publication.

Fury himself said he’d be fighting Oct. 5, and he told Behind The Gloves that Miller is his first choice.

Trevor Bryan is his second, he shared.

By looks of it, Miller isn’t stewing and feeling self-pitiable. Here is a recent IG post, which indicates he’s been busy at the gym:

A Fury vs Miller fight would do bang-up business at MSG. Those two are the two best talkers in the division and would go a long way in getting 15,000 or so butts into seats in the big room. It would be a solid precursor to Fury rematching Deontay Wilder in February, as the colorful Traveller has announced is his intention.

Of course, it is a fool’s errand to do too much longer-term planning in the fight game. Miller’s situation is up in the air, Wilder would have to get past Luis Ortiz if and when they fight a sequel — so stay tuned for more chapters in the now wild and a bit woolly world of heavyweight prize fighting.

—Woods is a Brooklyn, NY resident and is publisher of NYFights.com