Miller had seven-fight streak snapped in August
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Jim Miller is looking to take the expressway back to title contention.
Miller dropped a decision to Benson Henderson in August and saw his seven-fight winning streak come to a halt. He is determined to keep his eyes on the divisional throne. But in order to return to where he once stood in the UFC lightweight division, he must find his way through Melvin Guillard in tonight’s main event of UFC on FX: Guillard vs. Miller in Nashville, Tenn.
“I’ve been focusing on getting better every day,” Miller told HeavyMMA. “The fight with Henderson was in August, and I’ve worked hard to improve since then. After my loss, I wanted another tough fight that would get me back to where I was in the quickest possible fashion. A win over Melvin on Friday night might not quite do that, but it sets me up to get to where I want to be. Hopefully I can get right back on the road I was on.”
Guillard also will be looking to get back on track – his last outing resulted in a stunning upset at the hands of Joe Lauzon. Prior to that fight in October in Houston, Guillard asked the UFC to give him the fight with Miller – and Miller believes the matchup is going to deliver.
“Fans are going to see a fight,” Miller said. “I’m coming in there to fight him, and this is one that is probably not going the distance. Either he’s going to connect early and put me to sleep for the first time in my career, or I’m going to connect and finish the fight. If it goes into the later rounds, I’m going to submit him.
“I consider myself more than just a grappler. All of the guys I’ve faced who were supposed to be in a striker vs. grappler matchup with me, I’ve done well against. I dropped them and subbed them out. I feel like Melvin is a great striker with some wrestling, but I’m the more well-rounded fighter. I’m the striker-wrestler-submission artist. Wherever this fight goes, I’m comfortable with it.
“Of course I don’t want to get hit by the kid, but it’s going to happen. I’m not afraid of it. The guys who go in there and fight him timidly get picked apart and knocked unconscious. The guys who fight him and are willing to exchange with him do well. That is what I’m going to do, and I’ll be looking to put him away.”
While Jim Miller fights to get back to the division’s upper tier, other battles in his life continue as he watches his brother and nephew navigate a difficult road. Although the situation has presented the Miller family with hardship and sadness, they continue to remain positive and find strength in one another.
“My nephew has so many hurdles to overcome,” Miller said. “Even when they do the transplant, which has been pushed back, it still might not be the end all, be all for him. Dan is handling it very well. My nephew is actually in the hospital right now, so it’s tough. Dan won’t make it to the fight, but I know I have their support. They know they have mine as well. It sucks. It’s tough watching a little kid go through these types of things. He is so innocent. But he’s a fighter and as well as Dan and my sister-in-law handle it, my nephew puts them to shame. He deals with the pain, discomfort and other challenges and is a very happy little kid. He’s the light of everybody’s lives.”