Former UFC double champion Daniel Cormier is on something. On his podcast, DC and RC, Cormier stated that Jim Miller did not belong in the UFC Hall of Fame. This bothers me. So today, we will dissect this. First, the quote:
“I don’t feel like time served immediately puts you in the hall of fame. Look, he’s got more wins than anyone else, I love Jim Miller, and this makes it hard for me, but I just don’t feel like time served puts you in the hall of fame.”
Okay, so we will ignore the obvious: Donald Cerrone has been elected to the hall of fame with the same criteria and with an arguably worse career end.
Let’s look at the other sports for reference.
In baseball, there’s tons of players that made it to the hall for longevity. Cal Ripken Jr., is the epitome of this. He played 2,632 straight games. He did hit over 3,000 hits which was enough to get him in the hall of fame, but it was due to his 20-year career that Ripken Jr. made it in. If there’s a feat in MMA that’s close to this, it’s Jim Miller’s UFC 100, 200, and hopefully UFC 300 fight. 200 months in between the two cards. 16 years and 8 months should Miller make it to 300. For the record, Cormier’s entire MMA career was 11 years and 2 months. Jim Miller started fighting in the UFC before Cormier and will retire after Cormier in an ostensibly deeper division.
There are others like Hoyt Wilhelm, Rich Gossage, Hoyt Wilhelm, and Don Sutton. They all played forever and were borderline players that got the nod. Sometimes competing at the best level in the world and doing it for a very long time is enough. These players probably belong in the hall. To say they don’t is ridiculous.
Jim Miller: HOF’er
Let’s look at Jim Miller’s resume. He made his UFC debut in 2008, the last year we saw Daniel Cormier wrestle freestyle. He was a member of the 2008 Olympic wrestling team. Miller was 11-1 and making his UFC debut. Coincidentally, that one loss was to Frankie Edgar when they were both 5-0 on the regional scene.
After his debut, Jim Miller notched wins against Matt Wiman, Duane Ludwig, Charles Oliveira, Melvin Guillard, Joe Lauzon, Yancy Medeiros, Takanori Gomi, Clay Guida and Donald Cerrone. Miller’s Oliveira win is as good as Cormier’s best win over Stipe Miocic. Except Miller didn’t lose to Oliveira twice after beating him.
Here are Jim Miller’s accomplishments:
- Most wins in UFC history
- Most bouts in UFC history
- Second most finishes in UFC history
- Second most submissions in UFC history (tied with Demian Maia)
- Seven Fight of the Night awards
- Four Performance of the Night awards
- Three Submission of the Night awards
- Fight of the Year in 2012 with Joe Lauzon
That’s just a few. Naming them all would take forever. Here’s the link to them all if you really want to know how great Miller is. But if a Fight of the Year and SEVEN Fight of the Night awards isn’t good enough, I don’t know what is. A Fight of the Night award is the second-best thing you can win in the UFC aside from the title. Not only does it give you a smooth $50k, but it tells fans that on that night, you came to fight.
Then to top all that, Jim Miller has Lyme disease. He’s collected all of his awards from 2013 on with a disease that induces headaches, tiredness, joint pain, neck stiffness, and heart palpitations.
My issue with Cormier saying that Jim Miller is not a hall of famer because of longevity is simple. Jim Miller is not only a longevity fighter. He’s the quintessential hall of fame fighter. He’s the goal everyone is trying to be. Max Holloway and Charles Oliveira got into the UFC at 18 or 19 years old. Miller did so at 25. Should he get his wish and fight at UFC 300, he would likely add another two or three fights under his belt. He’s 39.
Jim Miller is a hall of famer, DC.
Your friendly neighborhood fight fan. I watch way too many fights and my wife lets me know it.