Bryce Mills Wants to Prove He Is More Than a Ticket Seller

Bryce Mills has the ability to move a lot of tickets. But this weekend he hopes to begin showing he’s more than just an attraction.

Mills faces Gerffred Ngayot at the Turning Stone Resort and Casino, in Verona, New York, on Saturday, March 2 as part of the ESPN+ telecast of the Otabek Kholmatov-Raymond Ford undercard. The venue is an appropriate battleground given Mills’ and Ngayot’s local ties.

“It is a fight I am looking forward to,” said Mills (14-1, 5 KOs), who hails from the Syracuse area. “I know he is going to bring it, and I know I am going to bring it. He is going to bring a crowd, I am going to bring a crowd. There is going to be a lot of energy in that building.”

The fighters have never sparred nor seen each other, according to Mills, but he has heard of Ngayot (6-1, 5 KOs), a Buffalo resident.

“I think he [Ngayot] was a multiple-time state champion and [won the] Golden Gloves,” Mills said. “He had a big amateur career himself.”

The 22-year-old Mills, a former amateur kickboxer (28-1 record, with at least six tournament championships), would seem to be a promoter’s dream given the crowds he attracts. When asked if he might be outselling some of the bigger names on Saturday’s card, he said he suspected so.

“The reason I say that is, I am so close to the venue. I get a ton of local support,” Mills said. “Whether it was boxing or kickboxing, I used to pack arenas, and as an amateur I was selling 300-400 tickets per fight. As a professional, that number continues to rise, and I want to say we are close to the 1,000 range.”

Yet Mills’ record might give a hint as to why he doesn’t yet have a promoter. Modern boxing fans love their young fighters to be unbeaten, and all others are at risk of being overlooked. A split-decision loss to tough journeyman Ryan Pino might have some wondering about how far Mills can go in the sport. 

“I did have an amateur boxing career, but my main focus was in kickboxing,” Mills said. “So it took me time to develop my skills and become comfortable as a professional boxer.

“Then again, I only had a limited amount of fights as an amateur boxer, and I was beating guys with much more experience than me – and I was beating these guys in my amateur career. Now that I am a [pro] boxer, what am I going to do to these guys now?”

Mills’ head coach is Jim Andrello, who the fighter says is like a second father to him. Recently, Mills added Armando Munoz, of Rochester, New York, to his team to serve as a second-assist and cut man.

“I’m more prepared for this fight than any in the past,” Mills said.

As much as Mills wants to prove himself in the ring against Ngayot, 28, he isn’t above bringing a bit of showmanship to the affair.

“We actually have something cooked up for this fight,” Mills said. “My shorts, what my walkout outfit will be – and I don’t want to give it away yet – but it is going to be a tribute to Syracuse.

“The fact that I have the hometown support that I do is amazing. We want to take it beyond Syracuse and take it worldwide.”