December 11, 2010
Charles Oliveira is a great prospect. The key word is prospect. The 21-year-old was facing a guy with seven UFC wins and a well-rounded game.
Oliveira took Miller lightly on the ground and paid for it.
The New Jersey-native, working from top control in a standing position, transitioned to an ankle lock. Oliveira didn't do much to extricate himself, and Miller cranked back with a kneebar. Oliveira tapped almost immediately giving Miller the win at 1:59 of the first round.
"When I stood up and the leg presented itself, I went for it," Miller said at the UFC 124 postfight press conference. "I really don't care where the fight ends up going. I started attacking the toe hold and he didn't worry about the knee."
Update - Miller split the Submission of the Night award with Mark Bocek and received $50,000 for his efforts.
Miller's appearance must fool people. At just 5-foot-7 with a red beard, he looks like the guy next door. There was heavy betting on Oliveira. By the time the fight went off, Miller was a plus-140 underdog in spite of entering the match with a six-fight win streak.
"Coming into the fight, I was trying to gain a little respect to be honest," Miller said. at the UFC 124 postfight press conference. "We went into that fight with him as the favorite, which I really didn't understand."
"He's got a big future ahead of him, but I knew I've fought a lot tougher guys than he has," Miller said. "I was trying to leave me mark and really get after him."
Even Dana White had his doubts about Miller's chances on the ground with Oliveira.
"When he went for that foot, me and (UFC owner Lorenzo) Fertitta looked at each other and said 'that was stupid.' Then he pulls off that kneebar," White laughed. "Goes to show you what we know. That why he fights and we don't."
Miller (19-2, 8-1 UFC) is a tough nut to crack. His only loss came against Gray Maynard, who is unbeaten in the UFC and challenging UFC lightweight champ Frank Edgar for the title next month.
Oliveira (14-1, 2-1 UFC) was the rage of the division after two dominant UFC wins since August.
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