Photo by Nick Laham/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
Dan Miller, a long-time UFC Middleweight making his Welterweight debut had a very hard battle but finally finished Ricardo Funch at UFC on FX Maynard vs. Guida. MIller stunned Funch in the third and followed up with a guillotine choke from the mount that tapped Funch.
After his win was announced an emotional Miller thanked fans and fellow fighters and the UFC for all the financial help they gave his dangerously ill child in recent months.
Miller came out aggressive and landed with a sharp body kick that tagged the southpaw Funch. Miller salted the pain with punches to the body and checked Funch's leg kicks. Funch came forward firing repeatedly but rarely landed. Funch was the first to clinch up and he forced Miller up against the cage. Miller reversed and hip tossed Funch but Funch sprung back up. They had some nasty exchanges on the feet after separating. Miller landed and hurt Funch but Funch eventually countered and then dominated some judo bout style exchanges to end the round.
In the second they had some exchanges before Miller locked in his standing guillotine and pressured for the choke but Funch escaped and landed some shots including nasty elbows to Miller's head. Miller got another standing guillotine in a half-minute and Funch escaped again. They rinsed and repeated but this time Funch took Miller down. He got to side control and foiled the choke when Miller segued to a heel hook attempt. Funch landed some odd elbows to the shins and ankles. Miller was forced to let go of the leg. Funch power bombed with a couple of rights then Miller bopped him with a hard upkick. Miller got back up but Funch got underhooks again, surprisingly outwrestling the American. Miller got a no arm guillotine working again but Funch escaped with 10 seconds left in the round. Miller was bloody on going to his corner.
There was a between rounds snafu with the cage lock that slowed the resumption. Funch came out swinging when the round started but Miller dropped him with a sharp counter. Miller immediately pounced and landed some elbows on the ground but couldn't get the finish. Miller had to let him back up and then hurt Funch with a left. Miller cracked him with a combo and Funch stumbled, swung very awkwardly and then fell back. Again Miller couldn't finish. Funch forced Miller back against the cage and took Miller down in a headlock. Miller got back up but was still underhooked and pinned against the fence. Funch attempted a hip toss and Miller attacked with another guillotine and this time he flipped Funch over and finished from the mount.
The big story here is the UFC Welterweight debut of Dan Miller (13-6(1); 5-5 UFC). A longtime fixture of the Middleweight division, Dan is the brother to Lightweight contender Jim Miller. He's faced many of the best at 185, which accounts for his .500 UFC record. His move down to 170 is interesting, as he clearly wasn't going anywhere at 185, but he wasn't especially small for the division. How will the cut treat him? The other big question is his mental game. Miller has been on the shelf for almost a year, due in part to his son's health issues. There's no denying Miller's heart, but the time off and the cut are both tough. Ricardo Funch (8-3; 0-3 UFC) made his UFC debut in 2007, going 0-2 before being released. He got a second chance after a win outside the Octagon, but lost his return fight to Mike Pyle. The Brazilian fighter holds a win over T.J. Waldburger, but is almost certainly fighting for his job here.