Jason “Mayhem” Miller returns to the UFC on July 2. | Photo: Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com
Jason “Mayhem” Miller has come a long way.
The host of MTV’s “Bully Beatdown,” Miller is one of MMA’s most colorful personalities. He’s also a very good fighter finally set to return to the UFC when he meets Aaron Simpson on July 2 at UFC 132.
“I think it’s really cool to kind of come full circle,” Miller said recently during a “Savage Dog Show” interview on the Sherdog Radio Network. “I kind of started out living in my van [while training in Huntington Beach, Calif.], and now I drive my nice car over there and I’m like, ‘yeah, buddy, I don’t got to brush my teeth at the gym.’ ... I don’t have to go hold pads for a fat lady for an hour each day. That’s a good thing, but at the same time, I wouldn’t trade that for anything.”
Miller won’t forget those days either. They were rough but formative.
“I remember [being] a young guy and I have no money and nobody cares, nobody gives a damn,” he said. “You’re just some knucklehead fighter who nobody cares about. You have to clean the mats to pay for your training because you don’t have any money to pay the trainers. I wouldn’t have it any other way. Now when I see young bucks in here, I invite them in and make sure to work with those guys. I can get something from them. They’re tough and they’re good. I have a lot more experience than they do, but they can bring that enthusiasm that keeps me excited about my career.”
Miller’s career took an interesting turn recently when he was moved from Strikeforce to the UFC. His bout against Simpson will be his first in the Octagon since April 2005.
“They gave a list of guys and there were probably guys I could have beat easier, but screw that, man,” Miller said. “They’re giving out ‘Fight of the Night’ bonuses. They’re giving out ‘Submission of the Night’ bonuses. They’re giving out ‘Knockout of the Night’ bonuses. I’d like to be the first to get all three.”
Although Simpson has a strong wrestling pedigree, Miller thinks he will come out slugging.
“I expect him to try to come in and try to hit me with that [big] right hand,” Miller said. “Luckily I’ve sparred with Dan Henderson for years, so I’m pretty good with not getting hit with the right hand. He can throw that thing. He’s a strong dude. He’s well rounded. He can wrestle and everything. He’s good at everything. I’m expecting a fantastic fight.”
Fans should too. Simpson is an aggressive fighter, and Miller is always entertaining.
“He’s tough everywhere,” Miller concluded. “It’ll be an honor to beat him up.”
Listen to the full interview (beginning at 2:04:40).