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‘Mayhem’ Miller’s Nonstop Hustle
‘Mayhem’ Miller’s Nonstop Hustle
Tuesday, November 03, 2009
by Lotfi Sariahmed (firstname.lastname@example.org)
MMA's master of mayhem, Jason Miller is probably better known in the United States for his work on MTV’s “Bully Beatdown” than for his work in the cage.
On Saturday, though, he’ll look to show off his fighting skills on CBS when he takes on Jake Shields in a middleweight title fight at Strikeforce/M-1 Global “Fedor vs. Rogers.”
“The fact that my grandfather can switch the thing on as long as he's got the stupid high-def converter box on his TV … that's awesome,” said Miller on the Sherdog Radio Network's “Beatdown” on Friday. “I mean, that's huge. That's really big. I know I don't have my gold teeth anymore or a giant beard, but I hope to draw at least some of the viewers.”
Miller already attracts his own audience. Between his Web site, Twitter and MySpace accounts, TV work, radio appearances and writing, he has all major forms of media covered. Then there's that fighting thing.
“I look at myself as an entertainer,” Miller said. “I enjoy entertaining the masses, and one of the ways I do that is by kicking, punching and choking somebody. It's just a matter of doing the prefight, the fight and the postfight. That's what I'm into.”
But Mayhem the Entertainer is no different than Jason Miller.
“It's all me,” Miller said. “I just make sure I put it out there for you. At the very least, you have to respect that about me. I don't care if you don't get my jokes. You don't have to be my fan. Go root for Jake Shields. If you want to be boring, go ahead. But at the same time, I'm very honored that anybody listens to me or anyone pays attention or anyone cares when I fight.”
As is the case with most successful fighters these days, questions inevitably lead to when Miller could resurface in the UFC. He actually finds Strikeforce more appealing, though.
“If I'm the UFC welterweight champion, I've typecast myself into one spot,” Miller said. “I know I have more talents than just my fighting. If I'm owned by the UFC, I'm owned by them. It's not a bad thing. It's just business. They're not stupid. They don't want their fighters going outside their control. With Strikeforce, they're a great organization, but they're going to understand that they're going to benefit more from me being on MTV, from me writing articles for Fight Magazine. Me doing stuff outside the fight realm only helps them and helps their brand.”
And it helps Mayhem get his name out there as more than just a fighter.
“Every other fighter in the world it seems like has this sense of, ‘OK, I got to go. I got to be in the UFC, and that's going to be where I make my money.' Well, dude, except for (Georges) St. Pierre, (Chuck) Liddell, (Randy) Couture and (Tito) Ortiz, nobody else is making big money. I just always knew that the way I was going to make my money was in the mainstream, and where I was going to make my money and be successful was by building this brand and be me on a big scale. Be a fighter. Be a personality, and I'm really still, every day, trying to do that. It's a nonstop hustle.”
Once he steps into the cage on Saturday, however, the man of many hats has only one goal in mind.
“I don't need to write a storyline for this,” Miller said. “To me, my hand raised at the end, that's good enough. I just want to show everybody, always bet on Mayhem.”
His thoughts on Shields
On Jake Shields:
“Are we pretending to hate each other? Nah. We poke fun at each other, but whatever. We don't really hate each other. I mean, if you want me to, I can hate him in an instant. The easiest emotion for me to come to is anger. I don't know why. It's always been that way. My dad is the same way. He could be sitting on the couch and just snap into an instant rage out of nowhere, and I can do the same thing. To me, it's not that big a deal to hate anybody. But I don't hate the guy; I'm just going to beat him up.”
More on Shields:
“On top of not being able to beat me in a fight, he can't beat me in a damn wordplay either. He talks like a mannequin. The time that we got him on ‘Bully Beatdown’ to say something, he couldn't say anything and he had a script. Some people are made for TV or radio, and I am and I've honed these skills over years of doing it. It's ridiculous. If you want viewership to drop in the toilet, he can host the show.”
On too much entertaining, not enough fighting:
“Who's saying? Who's criticizing? I don't ever see anyone go, 'He shouldn't do that.' Don't watch. I don't give a damn. Go switch the channel. Oh, you can't because you only have CBS at your house? Oh, that's sad. You should really work on that and get some cable. I heard SpikeTV shows fights for free too.”
“My weight is good. It's kind of uneventful. The training camp has gone good, and I was a little concerned because my body was run down (since) I trained so hard, but I'm coming back and I'm peaking here at the right spot. I'm excited. Right now I can go five five-minute rounds with fresh guys, so I'm prepared for a long night if it comes to that.”
On whether “Bully Beatdown” fans are MMA fans:
“I've gone ahead and done (something) on my own where I'm getting people into MMA through a show that's funny and interesting. I've done it my way. I've gone the back way to get fans. I've gone, 'Hey, kid. How old are you? 14? Watch this instead of skateboarding.' And that's what they're doing now. I think that's what needed to be done. Someone was going to do it eventually, and I just got lucky where I'm the host of ‘Bully Beatdown’ and I got to bring some MMA to people who never heard of ‘Ultimate Fight.’”
On marketing and branding:
“I'm not trying to just go out there and be the instructor guy or only a fighter guy. I'm trying to be multifaceted and be an entrepreneur on the level where I'm trying to do everything I do as big as possible and as great as possible. I really have a motivation and ambition to do everything I can do as best as possible. That extends to my marketing and my branding and you remember me because I'm loud, crazy and have a big red stripe on my head. It's all part of the same thing.”
On how much of this is a bit:
“It's all me. I just make sure I put it out there for you. I'm me for real. If you don't like me, that's OK, and if you do like me, awesome. Come with me, we're going to have a fun time. It's the same way I pick up chicks. 'Hey you want to hang out? No? I don't care.'”
On real vs. fake hate:
“I just keep it real, man. Jake, I don't really have a problem with. Jacare, we just beef and we don't really like each other. I don't know. There's something lost in translation there and that's that.”
On Fedor vs. Rogers:
“I would like to see the Fedor fight. I know Fedor is arguably the number one heavyweight in the world. I would like to see Brett Rogers go out there and mess up everything.”
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