It hasn’t been a fun holiday weekend for Jason Mayhem Miller. Miller lost a unanimous decision to at UFC 146 to C.B. Dollaway and was immediately cut from the UFC following a backstage incident. Less than 48 hours later, Miller announced his retirement from MMA on Memorial Day…for right now
[adinserter block=”2″]The announcement was made on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Hour on Monday afternoon. The announcement shouldn’t come as much of a surprise to those who follow Miller in the social media. Miller made a lot of promises prior to his fight with Dollaway and one was that if he can’t perform in the octagon, he shouldn’t be there. Miller apparently felt that he could no longer compete at an elite level and has retired.
Jason Miller will be remembered by this writer as a guy with a lot more bark than bite. I always found Miller the kind of a guy whose pre-fight quotes were a lot more exciting than his fights. Some fighters are known for a particular move or submission that fans are accustomed to seeing during fights. For me, that move will be Miller sitting flat on his behind, back up against the wall, acting as if he was in control when yet it was the opponent keeping him at bay.
Miller will leave MMA after a brief second run in the UFC. Miller returned last year filling the open slot of coach on The Ultimate Fighter against Michael Bisping. Miller got the spot after Chael Sonnen was denied a license by the California State Athletic Commission. Miller was fun to watch as a coach but a bore to watch as a fighter once he stepped into the octagon with Bisping. Miller gassed out fast and appeared terribly out of shape for the fight.
UFC president Dana White offered Miller one last opportunity. Miller signed to fight C.B. Dollaway, a fighter that he probably should have beaten on paper. Miller did a lot of talking before the fight yet failed to back any of it up at UFC 146. Dollaway dominated the majority of the fight that saw Miller gas out once again. Yet it would be a backstage incident that got the most action out of Miller on Saturday. Miller reportedly yelled at a UFC staff member and was immediately fired after the show by Dana White.
“I wouldn’t call it an incident,” Miller told The MMA Hour. “It was my mask. (UFC coordinator Burt Watson) suddenly started yelling about my mask. I had a gas mask for the troops underneath my paper bag, the crazy paper bag that I painted, and Burt started telling me right as I’m walking out to fight. I’m trying to get focused there, instead of arguing about a paper bag.
The “incident” at UFC 146 was certainly not Miller’s first controversy in MMA. Miller is also responsible for starting the riot in Nashville at a Strikeforce show in 2010. Miller was given a three-month suspension for his part and a fine. More importantly, the brawl was a big reason that CBS declined to produce and air future Strikeforce shows on the network.
Instead of looking work outside of the UFC, Miller decided to call it a day on Helwani’s show. Miller is looking to capitalize on his gift of gab and parlay that into an entertainment or MMA broadcasting career (presumably not in the UFC).
“Every fighter gives the same answer when they say they’re retired,” said Miller. “Pretty much every fighter says ‘I’m retired until I need money.’ I’m a pretty smart dude, I have other avenues open to me.”
Miller was the host of “Bully Beatdown” which aired on MTV for three seasons. Miller has appeared on G4’s American Ninja Warrior and is a regular on The Jason Ellis Show which airs on Sirius/XM radio. Keep in mind that Miller did say “for right now.” In other words, if those entertainment opportunities don’t come along, expect to see him back in MMA action.
[adinserter block=”1″]Miller ends an 11-year career in MMA that saw more flash than substance. From 2001-08 Miller had a nice run of 20-5 in MMA competition. Miller fought in various weight classes from welterweight-heavyweight. Miller’s biggest wins came on lower-level MMA shows unless you call a win over Tim Stout impressive. Miller’s win over Tim Kennedy in 2007 was probably his best, although his win over Kazushi Sakuraba is probably his most notable. To his credit, Miller was able to craft an image that camouflaged that record and highlighted his pro-wrestling-like charisma.
Was UFC 146 the last we’ll see of Miller fighting in MMA? In the UFC yes, but I suspect that we will see him back in action at some point elsewhere.