Whyte determined from his negotiations with Hearn and Joshua that they had had favoured the fight at Madison Square Garden – where Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier had the first of their famous trilogy in 1971 – for some months. Hearn refuted that publicly when asked, insisting that three offers and a £5milliond pot had been put to Whyte to fight his fellow Londoner.
Joshua, undefeated after 22 fights, with twenty-one knockouts, faces 30-year-old Miller, who has also competed at the highest level as a kick-boxer, and is unbeaten himself in 24 boxing contests, with twenty KOs. Miller is ranked No 2 by the WBA and No 4 by the WBO. Joshua will be making a seventh consecutive world defence. Miller, in his last five outings, has beaten four former world title challengers in Gerald Washington, Mariusz Wach, Johann Duhaupas and Tomasz Adamek.
It will be a busy period for boxing in New York with the prospect of the World Boxing Council heavyweight title rematch between champion Deontay Wilder and lineal champion Tyson Fury taking place there in April or May, in Brooklyn at the Barclays Center – though that is still to be confirmed – and Amir Khan set to face WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford MSG on April 20.
Whyte, meanwhile, is expected to face Povetkin, Luis Ortiz, or Dominic Breazeale at the O2 Arena, London, on April 20. Breazeale is mandatory challenger for Wilder’s WBC crown, while Whyte is ranked No 1 challenger by the WBC.