Wednesday night, Donald Cerrone and Jim Miller main evented UFC Fight Night 45 in Atlantic City. It was a fight that did not disappoint.
Proposed locker room bonus for Donald Cerrone: 2 pickup trucks, a Kawasaki Ninja, a rocket launcher, some Skoal and two cases of Budweiser.— Jonathan Snowden (@mmaencyclopedia) July 17, 2014
In a bout that lasted under two rounds, Cerrone was able to knock Miller out with a nasty head kick. It was a finish that was the end to a scrappy bout between two of the best lightweights in the world.
So, what did we learn? Here is a a breakdown of what we learned and what each fighter should do going forward.
What We'll Remember About This Fight
The vicious kicks of Donald Cerrone. Every kick that Cerrone threw had bad intentions, from the leg kicks to the kick that ultimately ended the fight.
Cerrone went to the body early and often. It was the body kicks that eventually opened up the head kicks he threw at Miller.
He could have probably finished the fight earlier with a body kick had it not been deemed a low blow. However, it didn't last much longer, as Cerrone broke through Miller's chin with an excellent high kick to the chops.
What We Learned About Miller
We may have already known this, but Miller is tough as nails. He took an extraordinary amount of punishment and continued to try to stay in the fight.
Something we also learned is that he may be a high-level gatekeeper. He has had a number of chances to break his way into the top five and get into title contention but has been held back by superior opponents.
He's a guy you want to stick around, but he will likely be more of a gatekeeper moving forward.
What We Learned About Cerrone
A motivated Donald Cerrone is a dangerous Donald Cerrone.
That is a saying we have come to know with BJ Penn, but it has become true with Cerrone. Cerrone seemed to be mailing it in a few fights ago, but he got his motivation back and has been the dangerous fighter that he was before that.
His striking is nasty, and his ground is extremely underrated. He's a tough out for anybody in the lightweight division.
What's Next for Miller?
There is a man who lost in the co-main event by a kick that Miller could fight as well: Evan Dunham. That could be a great next fight for Miller.
Both men are still top lightweights in the company and could compete with each other to see who gets back in the hunt and who needs to reassess themselves.
What's Next for Cerrone?
He should find himself in a top contender's bout against Khabib Nurmagomedov. The winner gets a shot at the winner of Gilbert Melendez-Anthony Pettis.
It's a tough fight for Cerrone, but it's also a chance to prove he can take on a rugged wrestler with savage grappling. The winner would definitely be a worthy adversary.