Jim Miller

Jim Miller (36-17, 25-16 in the UFC), who broke into the UFC in 2008, is set to make his 2024 debut before his inevitable UFC 300 fight in April. He’ll face the 41-fight tenured veteran Gabriel Benitez (23-10, 7-6 in the UFC), who hasn’t fought since 2022.

After his layoff, Benitez is re-entering the lightweight division and is looking to propel himself into near-ranked contention with a win over the ever-tough Miller.

That will not be easy as Miller has won four of his last five fights, all coming by way of finish. Miller’s recent fight finishes, accompanied by Benitez not reaching the judges’ scorecards in his last four fights, are reasons this will be a likely Fight of the Night candidate and one you do not want to miss!

Betting Odds

Jim Miller, who was once listed as an underdog before this bout, has now moved to a -145 favorite on most betting sites.

  • Jim Miller: -145
  • Gabriel Benitez: +120

Fight Breakdown

Jim Miller has long held the respect of diehard fans. From his staggering 41 UFC fights to having faced several current and future Hall of Famers, A-10 Miller is truly a game veteran and one that appears to have not slowed one bit as he has aged.

Maintaining sharp fight skills while adding incomparable UFC experience makes for a unique challenge for any fighter. Knowing this, Miller has leaned into what makes him so tough, which is, bringing the fight to his opponent and dragging them into deep waters, testing if they have the necessary grit to overcome adversity. This style of heavy, in-the-face pressure on the feet, can be difficult for young fighters, and, when you add seasoned wrestling with elite submissions, Miller is a difficult test for any non-ranked caliber fighter to overcome.

The test Miller puts forth is seen by his recent record, as fighters who are near or have fought for ranked status have found success over Miller, but those who are not, have lost convincingly, both by way of his underrated power and known submissions. So, when he is set to take the octagon, questions of consistency or talent do not need to be asked of Miller, rather, the question to ask is if the challenger is near ranked status, inherently indicating they have special traits and necessary grit to find success over the aging veteran.

Sitting at the crux of the posed question is Gabriel Benitez. Having a near 50/50 record would indicate he is not near ranked status, however, Benitez has shown moments throughout his UFC career where it shows that if he can become more consistent, then he has the fight skills necessary to earn a number next to his name.

Notably, Benitez has shown the ability to fight quite well at a distance, using his powerful body kicks and straight down-the-barrel punches to find success. Furthermore, while not a traditional wrestler, he has comfort in going to the ground and working his way to find submissions, albeit he has not done so in the UFC in quite some time.

Having comfort and power on the feet in a variety of ranges accompanied by an arsenal on the ground that can lead to finishing fights is a nice package for a fighter to have. The issue for Benitez is that while he has the skills on paper to fight anywhere well, he struggles in managing the fight, both with ideal distance and electing to leverage technique over his natural propensity to get into slug fests. Both lack of distance management and slugging it out against opponents have led to him losing by KO in 3 of his last 4 defeats, and while these losses have come at the hands of talented opponents, the fact is that his defeats were to styles which should have benefited him – tried and true strikers.

In this fight, Miller is a far different test than he has had to face, as Miller will not only have comfort in a brawl but also, has the technical skills to drag the fight to the mat and work a finish. So, Benitez will need to not only show takedown defense in this fight but perhaps more importantly, display keen awareness to distance and maintain technical footwork to evade clinches. If he can do so effectively, then he has the sniper-like striking to once again find a TKO/KO finish.


Gabriel Benitez is a tricky fighter to peg. That is because he has the skills at his disposal to fight at a very high level, but has fallen victim to mental errors and lapses in judgment. Miller, on the other hand, leverages his judgment and experiences to elevate his aging self to earn impressive, fight-ending finishes. While it would come as no surprise to see a laserbeam of a left hand or an explosive head kick to land for Benitez, I am electing to favor Miller here as I believe he can close the distance and work his way to a clinch against the cage, and from there, land damaging elbows and/or get it to the mat where he can find a submission.

Pick: Jim Miller to win inside the distance

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