June 2, 2023

Myla Hill, Daughter of NBA Icon Grant Hill, Opens Up About MMA Journey: How Ronda Rousey Ignited Her Passion

5 min read

Myla Hill, daughter of NBA legend Grant Hill and renowned singer Tamia, is carving her path in the world of MMA with her undeniable talent and unwavering determination. In a recent interview with Ryan Jarrell of All Access MMA, she offered insights into her journey, aspirations, and the influential figures that have shaped her MMA career.

Myla Hill embodies the rising star in MMA, while her recent submission win draws comparisons to Jon Jones’ iconic victory, showcasing her potential in the world of mixed martial arts.

When asked about being compared to Jon Jones, one of the greatest MMA fighters of all time, Myla expressed her gratitude and excitement, saying, “Being compared to Jon Jones is definitely an honor. Obviously, Jon Jones is considered to be one of the greatest MMA fighters of all time, so getting compared to him, that’s definitely amazing.” She also emphasized that she remains focused on her training, taking it one day at a time and not letting the comparisons overshadow her personal journey.

Having achieved a 3-0 record in amateur MMA fights, all via submissions, Myla now aims to showcase her striking abilities. Reflecting on her previous fights, she shared her desire to demonstrate other aspects of her game, stating, “Of course, I looked at the fight, maybe watched it 100 times. There’s so much more that I wish I could have done… showing off the other assets of my game, the other parts of my game would have been nice.”

Myla considers herself a Gracie jiu-jitsu fighter first and foremost, attributing it as her base and background. However, she understands the importance of being a well-rounded fighter and continually improving. “Well, I consider myself a Gracie jiu-jitsu fighter first and foremost… but every day I’m working to become a more complete fighter,” she explained. Myla believes that mastery of different aspects of the sport is crucial to reaching the top, and she strives to enhance her skills in every fight.

Recounting her journey into MMA, Myla shared an intriguing story. She revealed, “Yeah, growing up, definitely was not into fighting or anything like that… when I was like six or seven, that show Bully Beat Down, right? On MTV or Spike, one of the two. I remember watching it, and I can remember the episode that I watched… I’ve never seen this before. I want to do that.” Her interest was further fueled by the rise of Ronda Rousey, who inspired her to pursue martial arts.

Obviously, Ronda Rousey blew up, got everybody’s attention, and I was like, one day after travel ball, I said, I’m going to quit this, and I want to do judo because Ronda Rousey did judo,” she shared.

Myla Hill, daughter of NBA legend Grant Hill and Grammy-nominated singer Tamia, stands alongside her superstar parents, combining athletic and artistic talents in a remarkable family legacy.

Despite initial confusion from her parents, Myla’s unwavering determination led her to a jiu-jitsu gym where she began training under John Burke, Hoist Gracie’s first black belt. Reflecting on her parents’ reaction to her MMA journey, she shared, “It was… I started when I was 17, started grappling. That’s when I first started. And I think my parents thought that I was going to use it for self-defense… But super supportive after that, but definitely was shocked.”

It was a surprise for my parents,” Myla continued. “I let them believe that because that let me get in the room. I remember on my 18th birthday, my dad bought us tickets—me, my two coaches, my coach’s wife, and my coach’s father. We went up to Raleigh, North Carolina, to watch the UFC Curtis Blades versus Junior Dos Santos live. My dad wanted to take me there to scare me, for me not to get into it. He was telling my mom, ‘She’s going to be so scared. She’s not going to want to do this. This isn’t going to be for her.’ And the opposite happened. I was like, ‘I’m hooked,’ and he kind of shot himself in the foot there. But super supportive after that, but definitely was shocked.”

When discussing the greatest female fighters today, Myla acknowledged the talents of Amanda Nunes, Cris Cyborg, Rose Namajunas, and Weili Zhang. She recognized the difficulty in defining greatness, considering the numerous exceptional female athletes in the sport.

At the age of 21, Myla feels no rush to turn professional. She emphasized her focus on continuous development, stating, “I just turned 21, so I’m super young, and I have so much more to learn, so much more to grow… I’d like to get maybe two more in, maybe three amateur fights.” Myla believes in preparing herself thoroughly before transitioning to the professional level.

While Myla would be honored to fight in any promotion, she expressed a desire to be associated with the UFC for the legacy it offers.

While I would be more than blessed and happy to fight in any other promotion, I’m in it for legacy,” Myla explained passionately. “To me, when you consider yourself the best, which is where I want to be, I think you consider the UFC immediately. I want to leave a lasting legacy in this sport, and I believe the UFC is the premier promotion for that.”

The victorious moment: Myla Hill’s hand raised in triumph inside the cage, a testament to her skill, dedication, and determination in the world of MMA.

As for her future fights, Myla expressed her eagerness to be more active in the ring. “I have no idea what my next fight is going to be,” she admitted. “I’d like to get maybe two more fights in this year, two more amateur fights. I had several promotions reach out to me, wanting me to fight for them, which I’m so happy and blessed about. I’m hoping to make a couple of trips this summer to train, get some more experience, and learn from some more people.

With her youth, determination, and drive to continuously improve, Myla Hill is poised to make her mark in the world of MMA. As the daughter of NBA legend Grant Hill and guided by her passion for the sport, she is on a path to leave an indelible legacy in the UFC.

In a sport where greatness is defined by skill, determination, and a relentless pursuit of improvement, Myla Hill is determined to carve her own path and make her mark among the greatest fighters in the world.

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