With the nickname “Mayhem” and a following of minions dubbed “Mayhem’s Monkeys,” along with ring entrances more suited to pro wrestling than mixed martial arts, most expect Jason Miller’s stint on the final Spike season of The Ultimate Fighter to be full of hilarity and hijinks.
And that expectation will surely be realized; Miller makes no bones about his talents.
“If there’s one thing I’m good at, it’s beating up people,” he said in a UFC promotional interview for TUF 14. “If there’s two things I’m good at, it’s beating up people and saying moderately funny things on cable television.”
His stint as a host of MTV’s Bully Beatdown surely wouldn’t lead you to any other conclusions about Miller either. However, belying what most fans see of him via his antics on television, there is actually much more substance to Miller than meets the eye.
He’s often been an underrated fighter known in insider circles as the guy that nobody wants to fight… not enough name recognition, but too much skill to risk a fight with. Miller is 24-7 (with 1 no contest) in his professional career, and has only been stopped twice in losing.
The past few years have been a little slow for him in the ring, bouncing around between Strikeforce and Dream. In fact, he’s coming off of a victory last year over Japanese legend Kazushi Sakuraba, one of the fighters that Miller often looked up to. He was the first fighter in Saku’s vaunted career to submit him, and the list of those that have tried includes a plethora of Gracies.
“I’ve worked very hard to get to this point in my life, and really dedicated myself to the art of mixed martial arts,” he said in the UFC interview.
And that appreciation for what got him here is what he believes will make him one of the better coaches that TUF has ever been a platform for.
“I really care. I give a chicken salad about these guys. Because I’ve been there,” Miller said, in a thinly veiled reference to Brock Lesnar’s stint on the show.
“The best thing that I can do is pay it forward… I’m really gonna turn TUF on its head.”
Will Mayhem drop the entertainment bomb on TUF?
Without a doubt.
But by the same token, expect Jason Miller to put all his passion into helping his charges on the reality series become better fighters and put their best foot forward when they step in the Octagon.