Dalton Miller

‘No matter how damaged or lost you think you are you can find your way back.  Keep believing and you will be granted favour to find that which is lost.  No one is too lost or gone.  Ever.’
 
Those are the words of writer Joey Renee.  As a boxer, Dalton Miller is at a place in his career where there is such a phrase holds a pertinence to his career.  At 32 years of age and with a start stop career behind him to date, he is now cashing his tokens in for a second chance.  Last change saloon?  Perhaps, and he knows that now is the time when he has to succeed.  “I’ve had a few ups and downs in my career.  I started off well then had a bit of time out” Miller tells me.  “I’ve had some bad decision fights along the way and then started going down the journeyman route without even knowing it!”
 
Going back to the start, Miller was a well schooled amateur boxer having had 27 unpaid fights before turning professional.  It was December 2009 when his debut in the paid ranks came about, defeating Iain Eldridge (4-6-1) by fourth round stoppage.  An impressive debut for the man born in Jamaica who resides out of Acton in London.  The record of Eldridge was better than most fighters would take on for their first pro bout, but it was then ten months before Miller would see action again, this time defeating a more seasoned opponent in Billy Smith (12-82-2).  It was at this point though when cracks appeared, as he then fought seven weeks later and suffered his first loss in November 2010.  From there he tells me his career started to take a path that he wasn’t happy with; the only problem was that he didn’t know it at the time:
 
“I was taking fights at two weeks notice and to be honest I didn’t really know what was going on.  It’s only when I’ve looked back and thought ‘hold on, these people are trying to turn me into a journeyman’.  I wasn’t getting proper preparation or warning for fights.  I’ve got a new lease of life now.  I’ve signed with Steve Goodwin and this is my comeback, this is my first fight under him.”
 
For his self proclaimed comeback it is fitting that his opponent is someone making their own professional debut, Paul Gordon.  The two clash on November 21st on the Goodwin Promotions show at York Hall in a super middleweight bout, a weight that Miller confesses may not be his favoured division once he is back to full flow.  “Come championship time I will hopefully get down to middleweight, I’m comfortable at super middle.  At the start of my career I was a light middleweight, I’ve managed to creep my way up as I’m getting older!”
 
His record now stands at three wins, six losses and no draws.  But the comeback very nearly didn’t happen.  It was back in March of this year when Miller was contemplating his in ring future with a friend, Nathan Wise, when the Acton man was erring on the side of hanging the gloves up for good.  It was when Wise told him to get in touch with an old contact that Miller had a change of heart about the situation.  “I had been sitting around, watching a bit of boxing and feeling a bit nostalgic and thinking about what I could still do and Nathan told me I had too much talent to quit and that I should phone Steve Goodwin.  I had fought on one of Steve’s shows in the past and we exchanged details at the time.  It turned out I still had his number so I gave him a call and he told me to pop down.  I did it first thing on the Monday, we had a chat and signed straight away.  There’s a good future ahead now, a new trainer and new team and it’s all going well.”
 
Dalton Miller
It is a lot of change for a fighter to take in, but for Miller it will end a period of relative inactivity.  Having fought only twice since March 2012 he will be looking to make sure that he is now seizing his second chance at success.  The upheaval in his setup has seen him linking with RJ’s gym down in Chingford, a connection that was made through the Goodwin promotional team.  “Steve (Goodwin) said to me that he had a trainer I could work with so I thought ‘at least I have a good group and proper team to work with now’ – this is my time” says Miller, reflecting back on the evolution that has got him to this stage where he will be fighting at York Hall on November 21st.  “It’s a fresh start so I want to come in and find my way, rebuild myself” he tells me.

With the new team Miller is also promising a new style.  He describes his previous self as a slick boxer, but changes are on the way for version two of Dalton Miller.  “I’m going to be a bit more explosive.  It’s never been my style of fighting, but I want people to see what I’m about now so I’m going to go out there and put on a good show.  I’m usually more of a really neat boxer, stylish.  I’ve never been a come forward fighter but I’m incorporating that in my training regime now and coming forward a lot more, I realise I need to do more work.  It’s going to surprise people who have seen me fight before, I’m a lot more aggressive!” he laughs.

With the fresh beginnings Miller is focussed on success.  He is realistic enough to know that belt opportunities won’t arrive immediately, instead setting himself some personal goals for getting hold of titles.  “We’re chasing the Southern Area at the minute, hopefully middle of next year.  It’s a few fights away yet, I need time to get myself prepared for that” he says with an air of confidence about the re-launch of his career.

November 21st is an opportunity to put things right for Miller.  His record may not be the best but there are new chapters ahead for the man from Acton.  A new promotional team, a new training setup and a new dawn in his professional career.  This is Miller’s second chance, one that he is determined to clinch onto and use his new explosive style to take advantage of.