Light heavyweight title bout between Pereira and Hill highlight strong card for UFC 300

Updated Apr. 11, 2024 7:19 p.m. ET

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Jim Miller, who stands alone with 26 career victories, entered the media room Wednesday wearing a way-too-big UFC 100 jacket with his name on it.

Miller decided this week was a good occasion to bring that jacket out of the closet for the first time in 15 years. He also competed in UFC 200, and now at 40 is on the preliminary card for UFC 300 on Saturday.

“I think I started mentioning fighting on this card in 2020, maybe 2019, and we're here and I'm performing,” Miller said. “When I first started talking about it, it was like, ‘OK, maybe I’ll drag myself to that card,' because that's kind of what I was doing for UFC 200.”

Miller said he didn't have to drag himself to this card after all, that even at an age when most fighters long ago stopped entering the cage, he feels reinvigorated. The card itself is strong enough to get the heart beating fast for anyone associated with the sport in any form.


Light heavyweight champion Alex Pereira (9-2) and No. 1 contender and former champ Jamahal Hill (12-1) take top heading in a card in which they are among 12 current or former title holders. The event also includes 11 fighters who have been on the top line of a UFC pay-per-view event, two-time U.S. Olympic judo gold medalist Kayla Harrison and International Boxing Hall of Fame inductee Holly Holm.

Hill said he wasn't surprised to be in the main event, but was still honored to share top billing in one of the more notable cards in UFC history.

“I just always planned on being in these moments ever since I was a kid,” Hill said. “From the time I was a kid, I always believed whatever I did I was going to be one of the best at it. For a time, it was football. For a time, it was basketball. I knew I would be here in moments like this fighting for championships and I would put myself up there with the greatest names to ever do it.”

Hill, 32, could have been the one wearing the championship belt into the cage, but had to vacate the light heavyweight title last July after tearing his Achilles tendon. That meant the 36-year-old Pereira took over as champ.

“Who better than Alex to win the belt?” said Hill, who lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan. “He's the two-division Glory (Kickboxing) champion, two-division UFC champion. Hands of stone, bad man, just a monster, dangerous, scary dude. He's all those things. But watch what I do to him.”

Pereira is a minus-138 favorite at FanDuel Sportsbook, meaning a $138 bet pays $100 if he wins. He is the only fighter in UFC history to hold belts in the light heavyweight and middleweight divisions.

This is Pereira's fourth UFC pay-per-view event in 16 months.

Should the Brazilian prove oddsmakers correct, he could turn his attention to becoming the organization's first three-division champion, but said he's not going there yet.

“The next step is to keep defending the title unlimited times," Pereira said through an interpreter. "I’m not the kind of guy to call out opponents because I’ll fight anybody. I’m the champ. I’ll keep defending it.”

The co-main event is the women's strawweight championship between champion Zhang Weili (24-3) and No. 1 challenger and China countrywoman Yan Xiaonan (17-3). Champion Justin Gaethje (26-4) of Denver faces second-ranked featherweight challenger Max Holloway (25-7) of Waianae, Hawaii, for the ceremonial BMF title.


Holm responded to Ronda Rousey’s claim in her book, “Our Fight,” that she went into their 2015 fight at UFC 193 in Melbourne, Australia, with a concussion.

Holm handed Rousey her first career loss, a shocking result at the time given Rousey’s dominance.

“I think it’s just hard for her to really admit that I was just the better fighter,” Holm said. “Was she so dominant and a good fighter? One hundred percent. I give her that. But she wasn’t better than me and especially that night.”


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