And when you’re around 300 pounds with an undefeated recorded shaped by 18 wins and 16 knockouts, why wouldn’t you listen?
The 29-year-old Brooklyn native, will finally make his Barclays Center debut on July 29. He’s set to face Gerald Washington (18-1-1, 13 KO’s) on the undercard of the big Adrien Broner versus Mikey Garcia fight card to be aired on Showtime that Saturday.
Last time out, in what was a championship opportunity for Washington, the 35-year-old got knocked out by WBC Heavyweight titleholder Deontay Wilder in the fifth round of their late-February encounter.
Miller, who also has a 21-2 record as a kickboxer, was unimpressed to say the least.
“He’s happier with getting knocked out after going five rounds with Deontay, he felt like he accomplished something,” said Miller. “Now if you would’ve went all 12 rounds and they robbed you it’s a different story, but you got whooped.
“He gassed out in the fifth round, so he’s patting himself on the shoulder,” Miller added. “Me, I’d probably jump off a bridge because that’s not how a warrior is supposed to go out. He’s going in there trying to win, and I’m going in there trying to kill him.”
Miller found kickboxing at the age of 14, and began boxing a couple of years after. He says that he had a hard time releasing frustration prior to practicing, ultimately excelling in both disciplines.
His teenage years also included a brief stint living in Canada with his aunt and other family members. North of the border is where Miller learned the importance of being calm, having fun, and managing his anger.
The natural-born trash talker comes from an upbringing where bravado was the norm. Equally as important was the ability to back yourself up, and clearly he could.
“When you grow up in a neighborhood where everybody talks junk: Some people live by it and some people just talk it,” he said. “I’ve always talked smack from playing football to kickboxing, it’s always been like that, it motivates me.
“A lot of guys shut up because they’re afraid of getting they’re ass whooped and they don’t want to look stupid if they lose,” he continued. “That’s why a lot of guys don’t say much.”
He’s also had some choice words for the undefeated champion Wilder, who has 38 wins, 37 by knockout, and no immediate opponent, a vacancy that Miller has been outwardly trying to fill for quite some time.
“They’re trying to make Deontay the heavyweight champ out of Brooklyn,” Miller said. “It is weird to me how they try to market him. A lot of fans don’t know who he is or don’t even care who he is. He’s all right in the boxing ring, but outside of throwing punches, like who is Deontay Wilder?”
Like many other fighters, Miller has gone through his fair share of adversity throughout his life, hopping the turnstiles in subways with a single dollar in his pocket en route to the gym. He says that holding on to his belief kept him pushing, despite the lack of immediate results.
“I feel like I know when everything around you starts to crash, and you just stay on the path, I think that’s what really helped me stay grounded,” he said. “They say when you start doing something it really takes ten years until you see progression or that hustle really take off. Six or seven years I started to see something and I knew what the game plan was, all or nothing.”
His first pro fight took place on July 18, 2009, and his upcoming bout with the aforementioned Washington will mark only his 20th fight in eight years.
More recently, Miller had a dispute with his promoter Dmitiriy Salita - the two have since mended fences - but it left the Brooklyn-born contender on the shelf for close to a year before signing on for his upcoming Barclays bout.
Now, Miller has branched out to create his own promotional company, Big Baby Promotions, like Floyd Mayweather, who Miller says who’s taken advice from in the past regarding the business side of boxing.
Though Miller says that his career has not gone as planned, he says that the learning experience has been worth it, and he’s ready to leap frog into the prime of his still blossoming professional livelihood.
“I’ve learned a lot more than I thought I would,” he said.
“It was definitely a long route, but the education that I gained through it has been worth it because we’re working with things a lot of people don’t even have right now,” he said. “People look and talk to me different now. A lot of these white-collar folks know when they talk to Big Baby he’s not the average boxer, they know he’s something special.”
As for what to expect from Miller on the 29th, he says, a little bit of everything.
“He’s like Mike Tyson. He’s like Riddick Bowe. He’s like Holyfield. He’s like Greg Page. He’s a little like Klitschko and even a little ‘Big Baby’,” says Miller, confidently referring to himself. “I bring all these fighters in one. Anytime I step in that ring, you’re going to be entertained.”