Jim Miller and Nate Diaz will meet inside the Octagon this weekend, headlining the stacked UFC on FOX 3 fight card at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The winner of this fight will put himself in pole position for a shot at the UFC Lightweight title, currently held by Ben Henderson.
Striking: 60/40 Nate Diaz
Nate Diaz’s striking is what really makes him a force to be reckoned with in the UFC Lightweight division. Diaz has a great timing, and second-to-none ability to pick his opponents apart, making sure he’s always in control of the fight. In my opinion, if Nate Diaz can keep this fight standing, Jim Miller will struggle to find his pace, and will be constantly forced to act as a counter-striker. Still, Miller can absorb a lot of punches, and he’s experienced enough to prevent from Nate Diaz to execute his gameplan, but then again, stand-up battle is Diaz’s to lose.
Wrestling: 65/35 Miller
Taking down Nate Diaz will be Jim Miller’s main goal on Saturday night. Wrestling is Jim Miller’s main strength as a fighter, and Nate Diaz’s main weakness. Nate Diaz is tall and lanky, while Miller is short and muscular – that’s a perfect physical advantage for a wrestler, who will simply enjoy from a low center of gravity. I expect Miller to take down Nate Diaz at will. Wrestling is his world, and he might score some valuable points with ground-and-pound strikes.
Submission Skills: 50/50 Even
Both fighters are well-versed on the ground. There’s a statistical advantage for Jim Miller; Nate Diaz has 10 submission victories on his record, while Jim Miller has 12. Also, Jim Miller was never submitted, while Diaz was armbarred by Hermes Franca back in 2006. But statistics aside, we all know it’s a pretty even BJJ match-up. I feel like they will both nullify each other’s submission skills, unless we see something extraordinary a-la Frank Mir vs. Minotauro Nogueira. However, if Diaz is aggressive off his back, he could prevent from Jim Miller to impose his will via ground and pound. One way or another, we are up for a great fight, LIVE and FREE on FOX.