Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) lightweights Jim Miller and Yancy Medeiros squared off on the pay-per-view (PPV) main card bout of UFC 172 last night (Sat., April 26, 2014) from Baltimore Arena in Baltimore, Maryland.
No. 9-ranked Miller recently got back into the win column with an armbar submission of Fabricio Camoes at UFC 168, his sole win in 2013. Prior to that, the gritty veteran had dropped three out of his previous five mixed martial arts (MMA) bouts to Benson Henderson, Nate Diaz, and Pat Healy.
He was originally scheduled to face Bobby Green at UFC 172, but an injury forced Medeiros -- who was already set to fight debuting Joe Ellenberger on the card -- to step in against Miller.
Medeiros came in with a short but tumultuous UFC tenure, having won his last bout by knocking out Yves Edwards at UFC Fight Night 31: "Fight for Troops 3" only to have the result changed to a "No Contest" after failing a drug test for marijuana.
His only other Octagon bout was a technical knockout loss to Rustam Khabilov after he injured his thumb in the first round at UFC 159.
He had his work cut out for him against Miller, but he had nothing to lose after stepping up to the plate. In the end, Miller proved that he could easily dispatch mid-level lightweights with a thoroughly dominant performance.
The fight started slowly, with Medeiros snapping a kick. Both fighters were a bit tentative to commit, but Miller soon rushed forward to land a couple good punches. He threw in a solid kick to the body. Medeiros landed some punches, but ate a huge body shot from Miller. The veteran landed a big knee to the body, causing Medeiros to have a bad look on his face.
Miller smelled a finish and quickly took the fight to the ground, locking on a tight guillotine choke. Medeiros refused to tap out, passing out with just under two minutes left in the first round.
The victory earned Miller the record for most UFC wins at lightweight with 13, tying him with Gleison Tibau. Miller is definitely back on track after a shaky stint, and he's due for a big fight.
A match against surging striker Donald Cerrone, who recently submitted Edson Barboza at UFC on FOX 11, would make sense for Miller.
He called out for anyone ranked above him, citing Khabib Nurmagomedov, Josh Thomson, T.J. Grant, Cerrone and Rafael dos Anjos; and in reality, those fights all make sense for him.
It's a time of exciting possibilities for Miller, but the pressure will on to prove he can finally defeat a true top-level challenger in UFC.
For Medeiros, he probably won't lose too much footing with the loss. He stepped in as a late replacement against a Top 10-ranked fighter, and will be headed for an easier test his next time out.
Training with Nick and Nate Diaz, Medeiros still has time to carve out a decent UFC career. Obviously he needs to begin shoring up his ground game if he wants to make that happen.
Jim Miller picked up a win streak by making short work of Yancy Medeiros at UFC 172. With a long list of top-flight UFC lightweights to choose from, who will be next for the gritty ground game of Miller?