Frankie Edgar handed Jim Miller his first professional blemish nearly four years ago. Since that time, the two Jersey boys have become friends and occasional training partners, in addition to Edgar solidifying his spot atop the lightweight mountain.
Despite all that has transpired after the unanimous decision defeat, Miller states that he’s willing to break MMA guy code in order to get what he wants. The bros before belts philosophy may exist within the Brazilian community, but not at the Jersey Shore because someone believes it’s Miller Time.
“Honestly, now that he’s got the title, I feel like such a (expletive) saying that I’d fight him, or that we’d fight, stuff like that. Back before he had (the title) it was like if our paths met then we do it,” Miller told MMAWeekly Radio.
“You figure we fought before, we beat each other up in the room, so why not really get paid to do it?”
While Miller has opted to execute the business before bros game plan, the 27-year-old claims they aren’t that close of homies to begin with.
“We don’t train together every day, we don’t train together that much anymore. The best thing for him was training for BJ for eight months and he’s totally reworked his schedule,” Miller said of his part-time amigo. “He’s working with Phil Nurse now and he gets into the city training at Renzo [Gracie’s gym], so there really hasn’t been much time for the two of us to train together.”
Although Miller and most of the fight community understand that lines will eventually have to be drawn in the sand, it’s still an awkward situation for people from the outside of the fight game looking in. These athletes have exchanged trade secrets, moves and techniques with each other that could one day be used against them.
What’s the incentive to share your complete repertoire with your teammates if they could be a future adversary?
“When you boil it down, it’s a sport. We’re not gladiators battling to the death, there is no real animosity in most fights,” Miller explained. “Sometimes guys just really don’t like each other, but most of the time we’re just competitors. We’re in there because we enjoy it and we like the taste of a win. Doesn’t matter who you’re fighting, you’re still going to go for it.
“It was a fun fight last time, we match up so well, that’s why we’re good training partners. We push each other in every area, so if we fight again it will be a fast paced fight, and a hell of a (fight). One fans would be talking about.”
Miller faces the talented Gleison Tibau next Wednesday at “UFC Fight Night 22.”