Baltimore - With six Fight Night bonuses to his name, you would think that UFC lightweight Jim Miller may just be one of those fighters that goes out there hunting for some extra scratch each time he steps into the Octagon. Not so, says the 16 fight veteran of the promotion's 155 pound division.
Miller, who will make it 17 fights in the UFC on Saturday when he faces Yancy Medeiros at UFC 172, said he has never changed his style in the pursuit of bonus money for one simple reason, "You never know what's going to happen, and what the powers that be; the performances that they think are the best because there is no criteria."
As for the locker room bonuses we hear about, Miller said, "It happens here and there. You do get the famous locker room bonuses, but it's not what people think. I think there's a bit of mystery about it, and I think people put a little too much weight on it sometimes."
In Miller's view, he has a contract from the promotion, and what he knows is that if he wins his fight that contract says he will earn twice as much money than if he loses the fight. So, Miller's goal is to always earn the maximum amount of money he is contracted to earn. However, if you think Miller is one to just go for the win, and play it safe - you'd be wrong.
"I get paid twice as much if I win, so obviously winning is number one, but I'm not satisfied with the judges having come into play," said Miller. "You've never seen me get excited about it. You've probably never seen me smile after winning a decision, and you never will because that's not what I'm there to do. I'm there to dominate my opponent, make him quit and finish him."
That style has sometimes cost Miller the winner's portion of his fight contract. The 23-4-0-1 fighter pointed to two specific cases where he felt had he fought less aggressively he might have earned a victory, "I think the Benson (Henderson) fight. I put him in six legitimate subs, and it was not there that night. If I had fought to control him a bit more, I think I could have done something. The fight with Nate (Diaz), I hurt myself two minutes into it, and I was a little rocked going into the corner after the first round. I knew I probably should have stayed away. It was a five round fight so I could have taken a couple minutes and backed away and used my movement, but if that door is closed behind me I'm going in to fight the way I always fight."
Miller's take on that style is, "If I'm satisfied then 95 percent of the fans are going to be satisfied. The only ones that aren't going to be satisfied are the family and friends of my opponent."
As for those bonuses that sometimes come after a fight, "It's money you're not contracted to make, so it's a gift from our employers, and that's the way I approach it," said Miller. " I'm not living off the gifts. I live off my fight and my win money."