By Jake Donovan
With each added fight, the June 1 DAZN show at Madison Square Garden is becoming more and more of a UK invasion.
Anthony Joshua is set to make his U.S. debut atop the bill, with the unbeaten and unified heavyweight titlist to defend his collection of belts versus Brooklyn’s Jarrell Miller. Two more big names from across the Atlantic are due to fill undercard slots, including Kell Brook.
The former welterweight titlist Sheffield, England revealed the news while making the rounds with local media on Monday.
"My Dad has been speaking to Eddie and it's looking like we're going to be added to the AJ bill… the Anthony Joshua bill in New York,” Brook told Sky Sports, whose platform carries his—and all of Matchroom Boxing’s—bouts in the United Kingdom. “That would be a good box ticked.
“I've always wanted to box at Madison Square Garden and I'm looking for titles. I want some big names, so that's where we stand.”
Once confirmed, Brook will become at least the third boxer from the UK to land on the card. Also in discussion are plans for unbeaten Katie Taylor—Ireland’s two-time Olympian and 2012 Gold medalist who is fresh off her three-belt lightweight unification knockout win over Rose Volante last Friday in Philadelphia—to face WBC lightweight titlist Delfine Persoon in a bid to crown an undisputed lightweight champion.
Brook (38-2, 26KOs) has fought twice before in the United States, his last trek here resulting in his first title win when he dethroned Shawn Porter in their Aug. ’14 welterweight title clash in Carson, California. The duration of his title reign took place in the UK, making three successful defenses before suffering an 11th round knockout at the hands of Errol Spence in May ’17.
Two wins have followed, both taking place at the super welterweight limit and in his Sheffield hometown. Included among them was a 2nd round knockout of Siarhei Rabchenko last March which made him a leading contender to the WBC super welterweight title currently in possession of Tony Harrison.
However, the British veteran—who turns 33 in May—seems to be keeping his options open, as evidenced in his coming in significantly lighter for his points win over Michael Zerafa in his most recent bout last December.
There were talks at one point of his possibly facing former two-division titlist Jessie Vargas, as both are part of the DAZN family, which will carry the July 1 event. Such discussion never evolved past that point, with Vargas instead slated to face Humberto Soto on an April 26 DAZN card in Inglewood, California.
That leaves Brook to instead mark items off of his bucket list, including a lifelong dream to fight at New York City’s famed MSG venue.
“It's a big bill, you've got AJ-Miller and Madison Square Garden. Every young fighter growing up, they always want to box at those kind of venues, as well as Las Vegas, MGM,” notes Brook, whose US debut came in Dec. ’11 in Atlantic City. “I'm training towards that date and we're looking for big names in the near future.”
From there, the hope is to land a title fight, regardless of weight.
"Wherever the excitement is. I can still make welterweight,” insists Brook, who has fought as heavy as middleweight in a failed bid versus then-unified 160 pound titlist Gennady Golovkin in Sept. ’16. “I believe this fight will probably be at catchweight, between 154lbs and 147lbs. We have this fight and then we move to a big name.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox