Steadily-rising UFC lightweight fighter Jim Miller increased his UFC win streak to five in a row last night by scoring a unanimous decision win over Gleison Tibau. Miller spoke with MMAJunkie.com after the fight and discussed where he believes he sits in the division and how far away from a title shot he thinks he is.
“I think I’m a couple of wins away,” Miller said of a title shot opportunity. “There are still a couple of guys that have the recognition at the top of the division even with a couple of losses lately. I just have to keep fighting.”
Brother to UFC middleweight Dan Miller, Jim remained as humble as ever in discussing his success at 155 pounds.
“It hasn’t even been two years that I’ve been with the UFC thus far,” Miller said. “I’m just trying to fight as often as I can and fight the toughest guys I can.”
Miller, who sits on the lower end of the size scale at 155lbs., dominated Brazilian fighter Gleison Tibau who resides at the very top of that scale, reportedly walking into the cage on fight night upwards of 180lbs. Prior to the fight, the New Jersey native indicated that he was well prepared to deal with Tibau’s size but after tangling with him, Miller changed his tune.
“I said the size wouldn’t really come into effect, and I guess I lied,” Miller said. “He’s a big boy. I pressed him up against the cage a couple of times. I wasn’t moving him. I knew going into it I just wanted to push him and try to get him to make a mistake. He was moving away. He really didn’t want to engage in the ground game, so I just kept going after him – leaning downhill and putting pressure on him.”
The only losses that Miller owns on his record are to current champion Frankie Edgar and number one contender Gray Maynard; neither man could finish him. A five-fight winning streak puts Miller very close to the top of the division and one or two more wins over top competition would almost surely secure a shot at the title. For his part, Miller said that he isn’t going to call for a shot at the belt, that he’s just going to keep working hard to get victories over fighters whom he respects.
“If [a title shot] is there, it’s there,” Miller said. “It’s not my style to start calling anybody out. I just have a ton of respect for my peers and the guys that train their asses off to step in the octagon with me. I just try to keep it at that and respect them and not talk [expletive].”