Jim Miller defeated Gleison Tibau at UFC Fight Night 22 in Austin, Texas, on Wednesday night, cementing his status as a UFC lightweight contender, but he isn’t calling for a title shot just yet.
“I think I’m a couple of wins away (from a title shot),” Miller told the media after the fight. “There are still a couple of guys that have the recognition at the top of the division even with a couple of losses lately.”
The landscape of the 155-pound division has been through a major shuffling of the deck recently. Former titleholder B.J. Penn has lost back-to-back fights to current champion Frankie Edgar. Kenny Florian was defeated by UFC lightweight No. 1 contender Gray Maynard.
Jim Miller, George Sotiropoulos, and Evan Dunham are all title shot worthy, depending on the outcomes of upcoming fights, but with the win over Tibau, Miller claimed his foothold as a contender.
Miller improved his UFC record to 7-1 and extended his win streak to five in a row. He wants to continue fighting and if a title shot arises, he’ll gladly accept it.
“I’ve just got to keep fighting. It hasn’t even been two years since I’ve been with the UFC so far. I’m just trying to fight as often as I can and fight the toughest guys I can,” said Miller.
“If (a title shot) is there, it’s there. It’s not my style to start calling anybody out. I just have a ton of respect for my peers, and guys that train their asses off to step in the Octagon with me. I just try to keep it at that and respect them and not talk (expletive).”
Miller doesn’t have to smack talk. His in-Octagon performances speak for themselves. His record speaks for itself.
He may be closer to a title shot than he realizes.