With 38 fights under his belt in the UFC, Jim Miller still has plans for many more.
After earning his 13th performance bonus for a stunning second-round knockout over octagon newcomer Erick Gonzalez on Saturday night, the 38-year-old New Jersey native made it clear that he’s not going anywhere, any time soon.
In fact, Miller is deathly serious about pursuing his dream to become the only fighter to compete at UFC 100, UFC 200 and eventually UFC 300, which wouldn’t actually take place until at least 2024.
One thing that’s certain is Miller’s commitment to continue fighting despite constant questions about when he might call it a career.
“At the moment, yeah [I’d like to fight at UFC 300],” Miller said during the UFC Vegas 40 post-fight show. “I try to set short term goals for myself and getting to 40 [fights] in the UFC would be awesome. I’m very confident that I can get there. Physically, it’s not even really worrying about anything else. Now it’s like let’s throw that other one, that farther carrot and hunt for that. If I have to adjust the way that I train, if I have to adjust the pace that I fight at, I think I’ll be able to get there. It’s not set in stone.
“It’s a little annoying I get asked about retirement all the time, every lead up to a fight because I’m willing to talk about it. Because I feel as a father, I’m being responsible talking about it but no time soon so I think we can hit it.”
With his fight at UFC Vegas 40, Miller eclipsed Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone with the most fights in the history of the promotion after they were previously tied at 37 each.
They previously faced off in 2014 with Cerrone getting the win by second-round knockout and Miller would definitely be down to run that back again as both athletes near 40 fights with the UFC. Then again, Miller has never been in the business of turning down any particular fight or opponent so he’s really to take on anybody the UFC throws at him.
“If they wanted to do me versus Cerrone again at 40 [fights], I’m game for that,” Miller said. “Anyone. Really anyone. It does not matter. I’d love to get my opportunity back and have the rubber match with [Charles] Oliveira. I’d love to fight [Dustin] Poirier again and if Conor [McGregor] needs a fight, I’m game for it, too. Every one of them, all at once. Let’s go!”
Earlier in his career, Miller earned a hilarious nickname from former matchmaker Joe Silva when he got the call about accepting a fight the UFC was offering him.
He said yes without hesitation and Silva answered back by saying “of course you are … you’re Jim f*cking Miller.”
Miller carries pretty much that same exact attitude when asked about the kinds of opponents he’d like to face in the future as he approaches 40 UFC fights while hopefully pursuing a career that would last until UFC 300.
“I don’t really care,” Miller said. “Honestly, I love fighting the veterans. I love fighting the guys that I know it’s going to be a great fight. The guys that I’ve really been a fan of. My fight with [Clay] Guida a few years ago, I have never been that excited for a fight. Cause I’ve seen him fight so many times.
“But then Erick [Gonzalez] tonight, it’s a dangerous guy, I put myself in his position and I felt the pressure cause I know how he’d be feeling.”