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‘Mayhem’ Miller Apologizes for Strikeforce Brawl; Will It Be Enough for the Tennessee Athletic Commission?

Strikeforce Nashville Jason Miller Mauro Ranallo
(The scene after the riot. Mauro looks pretty close to throwing down himself. Photo courtesy of WatchKalibRun.)

After his poorly-timed challenge of Jake Shields backfired in violent fashion, Jason "Mayhem" Miller sent out a one-word reaction via Twitter: "Whoops." Since "Whoops" is a tremendous understatement that doesn’t really capture the seriousness of the moment, Miller posted a longer mea culpa on his website last night:

"I would like to formally apologize to CBS, Strikeforce, and all fans of mixed martial arts for my role in the events following the Strikeforce: Nashville event. In retrospect, my timing could not have been worse to ask for my rematch with Jake Sheilds [sic], and I take full responsibility for entering the cage and setting off a chain of events that cast a dark shadow on the sport. I’ve been a fighter and a fan of MMA for over 12 years, and would never do anything to intentionally tarnish the sport I’ve given my life to. In the excitement of the moment I let my emotions run high and made a bad choice that resulted in a debacle, for that, I sincerely apologize."

It seems like I’m in the minority position here, but I think most of the blame for what happened at Strikeforce: Nashville lies with Miller rather than the Cesar Gracie camp, as Mayhem clearly violated the law of "Don’t Start No Shit, Won’t Be No Shit." As of now, the fates of all the involved parties are still yet to be decided. From a new report on MMAJunkie:

The Tennessee Athletic Commission has launched an investigation into a post-event brawl that concluded the CBS-televised "Strikeforce: Nashville" event at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville this past weekend. today contacted Jeffrey Mullen, the commission’s director, who declined to comment on the situation until the commission’s investigation is complete.
No timetable was given, but the investigation could lead to disciplinary action for those involved…The commission is likely to investigate who’s to blame for the fiasco. Additionally, officials from the regulatory body surely will re-evaluate procedures that allowed so many cornermen and other camp members to enter the cage.

And that’s precisely why you’d never see something like this go down in the UFC: Production is down to a science, and there are limits on who’s allowed in the cage. Following the main event at Saturday’s Strikeforce show, the cage was suddenly crowded with all of the winner’s friends and an MTV host/undercard fighter who had no right to be in the shot. Please, Strikeforce, never let it happen again.

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Seoul Brother- April 20, 2010 at 5:26 am
@The Harvester: "MILLER PULLED A KANYE." Fucking brilliant, sir, but in the interest of fairness to douchebaggery, I think it would be more appropriate to say he pulled an ODB.
ArmFarmer- April 20, 2010 at 5:00 am

You wonder what I would do if someone got in my face like that? This may come as a shock to you but if I was at work and that happened.. I would do nothing. I would do nothing because I would know that as soon as I assaulted him I would lose my job and it's not worth it. Kind of like when Rashad constantly got in Rampages face on TUF and he did nothing. Do you think he didn't want to smack Rashad? I'm sure he did but he showed something called restraint. It's a pretty critical quality to have to be a normal functioning human being. This isn't the fuckin street were talking about dude. They should be capable of controlling themselves
robthom- April 20, 2010 at 1:02 am
Only black dudes can get away with wearing beige suits.

( I'm so jealous!)
whitey- April 19, 2010 at 11:57 pm
i think this is all god's fault. sure everyone wants to thank him when everything goes right, but who mentions his name when the shit hits the fan? it's not mayhem or cesar gracie, it's god to blame.
El Topo- April 19, 2010 at 11:06 pm

If Hendo would have won like he was supposed to none of this mess would have happened.

I blame Hendo.
robthom- April 19, 2010 at 8:19 pm
So now we're back to top-bottom?!

I'm confused!

(and irritated)
mt59801- April 19, 2010 at 8:11 pm
Anyone who thinks it was anybody but miller's fault is fucking delusional, yeah all of team gracie didn't need to get involved. I'd like see what 1/2 his defenders would do if someone put their face that close. If your nose is touching my nose, my knee will be touching your nuts about a millisecond after that. You have two guys still running on adrenaline from their own fights and two guys from stockton that both carry the famous "I'm not a pussy" &"the no one has ever really kicked my ass " genes and you don't expect something to
jeffmcbusa- April 19, 2010 at 7:13 pm
I am kinda late chiming in on this but I had to post my
two cents and that is this: As far as the law in California goes and I have to believe it is similar there, if someone is down on the ground and you put the boot to him, that is a felony (assault with a dangerous weapon). That goes beyond a simple assault, say like punching someone. I cannot believe that SF would or could place any blame on Mayhem in that regard. Diaz all roostered up with his lower jaw extended and that bottom lip working overtime is so priceless!!! What a piece of sh*t he is!! As a fighter, I like watching him but as a human being...........Yuck Fou both the Diaz thugs!!!
wifey- April 19, 2010 at 6:45 pm
@drano - you are spot on, brother.

@knee2 - I am a little girl. And yeah, if someone attacked me at a bar I probably would call the cops. Cause I'm little. And a girl.

I really don't know what this comment has to do with anything, except that I have been drinking for several hours and now have diarrhea of the keyboard.
cecils_pupils- April 19, 2010 at 6:45 pm who won the fight?
dranokills- April 19, 2010 at 5:23 pm

knee2dahead Says:
Tue, 04/20/2010 - 01:11

At no point did I say that what happened between Miller and Shields camp was the same as a bar brawl, what I said was that you guys crying over what happened, mentality wise, are probably the same type of little girls that would go and cry to the cops over a skirmish at a bar.
That's just my 2 cents, go F yourself if you don't like it.
"You are probably the same guys that would run to the cops if a little scuffle broke out at the bar." --isn't that YOUR quote? you did compare them, see nobody imagined that shit. you used a bar as an analogy so in essence yeah you fucking did say it was the same. look if you can't even get your story straight how do you expect us to respect your opinion...oh wait, we never did to begin with, my bad, carry on.
And nobody is crying....but you. everyone is basically agreeing that what happened was bad, all but you dumbass, you are the only one who doesn't get it.
Now you are saying you wouldn't go to the cops because it was bar fight? seriously? that is great to know, I hope you get your fucking ass handed to you, and just go home and live with that ass whipping...oh and remember don't "whinge" over it or whatever the fuck you said before.
thanks for your 2 cents worth, it has about as much value as a strikeforce PPV.
rhinopoley316- April 19, 2010 at 4:53 pm
1. neither miller or shields had a signed match yet, lawler was just a proposed opponent and shields is a free agent, so how could he have a next opponent when he likely isnt going to be in strikeforce after that night. 2.Shields wouldnt have had to fight anyone in that cage, miller wasnt there to start a fight he was there to build some hype for a rematch and try to give shields an incentive to stay in strikeforce. so the ideal of a fair fight doesnt apply here. and 3. "took an ass whooping"? miller walked out of that cage smiling when it was over. i dont know too many guys who smile after an "ass whooping". and 4. the entire gracie team looked like a bunch of assholes and cowards, 5 gracie guys jumped him and miller still walked out smiling!
rlh61- April 19, 2010 at 4:14 pm
I'm not sure that it matters which act started it. The bigger issue is that the whole crew jumped in. If I'm not mistaken, Melendez and both Diaz bros were taking shots at Miller at the same time.

That's gangland shit, homie! And that's why this gives MMA a black eye.

The short story is the whole event gave more ammunition to people wanting to ban MMA when the event was supposed to be helping make it more widely accepted. Strikeforce: Nashville...Epic Fail.
ghostboner- April 19, 2010 at 4:14 pm
@eyeheartmma - Would this disrespectful manor happen to be Wayne Manor? Or Meerkat manor? Watch the video man. Bottom line, Mayhem wouldn't have had anything to slap if Melendez kept his hands to himself. Mayhem came to talk, and was attacked. He was not the one to make it physical.

All y'alls need to go on over to fightlinker. com and check the breakdown. Shields clearly attacked Miller. No one was seriously injured, charges do not need to be filed, but the truth must be told. And that truth is that Shields started a fight with Mayhem, and now he needs to finish it.
fatbellyfrank- April 19, 2010 at 4:09 pm
They should just keep the numbers of guys allowed in the ring down, fighter plus two cornermen is all that's needed, it's when you get the fighter's entire training camp, (crew, posse, whatever)in the ring after a fight, when the testosterone and adrenaline are runing high, that you have the potential for problems, I recall the same thing happening when Diaz got in KJ Noons face asking for a rematch and we were treated to the Noons and Diaz families going at it ( anyone seeing a common thread in these incidents?).
I enjoy watching the Diaz boy's fight but someone needs to sit em down and have a discussion about the meaning of the word "professional".
@Dranokills: whinge is just another word for whine, used extensively here in Australia, usually used to describe English peoples behaviour eg " shut the fuck up you whinging cunt". Hope this helps
The Harvester- April 19, 2010 at 3:53 pm
More and more people are starting to realize the truth... Mayhem is a Quest fighter. Was upset Henderson lost + Shields beat him once before. He wasn't supposed to be hyping nothing, he was pissed so he snuck his way up to the mic. When Melendez told him to step back he pushed forward and the fight was on.(People are finally clueing in to this reality)

I can't stand reading people calling for assault charges and blaming it all on the Gracie team. If an athlete did that to another athlete in pretty much any other team sport, you would expect something to go down. What makes MMA so different.
The Harvester- April 19, 2010 at 3:42 pm

I Like Miller but it was his fault...When they pushed him away he should of stayed away. What's with people ignoring this fact. He got just as riled up as they did he just didn't have no back. He was fighting too + he started it |If you watch an unedited replay you can clearly see he is the INITIAL aggressor|. Gracie team finished it haha.

When you go into the cage to make a rematch request, as done in the ufc its staged and they know (UFC & Dana) that your going to do it. Usually AFTER the winner is interviewed. Miller tried to steal the show and got beat. How can anyone say that's not how it went down? It's unfair to Shield's to have Miller in his face acting a fool.

Hyping a rivalry between team Quest and Gracie fighters would be sweet.

** I am a Mayhem Miller fan too, so you can't say I am biased. I also like the Gracie fighters.
eyeheartmma- April 19, 2010 at 3:23 pm
It wasn't that Miller said something they didn't like.
Miller slapped Melendezes arm when Melendez put his hand on Millers chest and asked him to step back..... Little as it was....him slapping Melendezes arm was the first act of real aggression. Who is he or you or anyone else to tell the folks there with Shields at that point where to draw the line. It had been crossed, in a disrespectful manor.
Mr_Misanthropy- April 19, 2010 at 3:19 pm
You know, I've always hated wrestling but I've always been somewhat jealous of the gilded spectacle of "The Royal Rumble". Screw super-fights, lets have some super-brawls. ATT vs. Greg Jacksons! AKA vs. Blackhouse! Give the ref a taser and a face shield and suspend him from springloaded cables like Thunder Dome and we're in business....
knee2dahead- April 19, 2010 at 3:11 pm
At no point did I say that what happened between Miller and Shields camp was the same as a bar brawl, what I said was that you guys crying over what happened, mentality wise, are probably the same type of little girls that would go and cry to the cops over a skirmish at a bar.
That's just my 2 cents, go F yourself if you don't like it.
ghostboner- April 19, 2010 at 3:07 pm
dranokills nailed it. Just because someone says something you don't like doesn't mean that you and 3 or 4 of your homies get to stomp him. At least, not at the same time.

That said, if every strikeforce show ended with a brawl, I would be a lifetime viewer.
robthom- April 19, 2010 at 3:04 pm
As much as I dont care for Mayhems shtick, I can kind of understand his "excuse".

Its not like we dont all get hyped up and ornery just watching them fight. Imagine being front row and an active participant in the sport that same night.

It can happen. And its excusable once or twice before you can adjust your adrenaline to check yourself IMO.

The ole 3 strikes rule.

But everybody wants to play the blame game and make more drama out of it than it is.
dranokills- April 19, 2010 at 3:02 pm
so kneed2 what your saying here is I put you in your place and you didn't like it?
Ok good, maybe you learned, I am still hopeful then.

could you clue us all in on exactly what the fuck a " whinge" is?
is it a whiner who hinges his post on stupidity?
Or is it a whiner who went "gansta" on someones ass?

wifey- April 19, 2010 at 2:59 pm

You need a knee to the head. It might raise your IQ a bit.
Seriously, if you can't understand the difference between a bar brawl and professional fighters acting like douchebags on national TV (in a country that demonizes and criminalizes MMA) then you have some motherfucking issues.

Oh, and only pansies use the word pansy.
Charming Charlie- April 19, 2010 at 2:56 pm
Notice the security holding the commentary team back. They won't underestimate Miller's ability to start a brawl twice.