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Anthony “Lionheart” Smith is happy the UFC’s troubled light heavyweight son, Jon Jones, is returning from exile- even though on the face of it, it seems unfair he is rewarded with a title shot immediately.
“As far as Jon Jones goes: Like I’ve said 100 times, I’ll never talk about anything Jon Jones does personally because that’s his own life,” Smith told MMAjunkie at UFC Fight Night 138 media day. “He wants to mess it up, that’s on him. As unfair as it does seem that Jon Jones is back in a title shot, the title’s back in rotation, and that’s something ‘DC’ wasn’t doing. I said 100 times I never thought ‘DC’ was going to come back to 205.”
The objection in regard to Daniel Cormier is one other fighters have made- that he has no intention of making the very tough weight cut to 205 again when he has the heavyweight title. DC himself hasn’t admitted that- he says if he loses his heavyweight title at UFC 230 to Derrick Lewis, he might just come back and upset the planned UFC 232 matchup between Jones and Alexander Gustafsson. Smith doesn’t think DC has any intention of doing that, and is just glad the situation will be resolved one way or the other, for the sake of himself and the rest of the light heavyweight contenders.
“I understand,” Smith said. “He’s the double champ, and he wanted to hold onto that as long as he could, and I couldn’t say that I would’ve done any different. I’m just glad that it’s moving again. I just hope that Jon doesn’t beat Gustafsson and then hold the division up again.
“I just don’t think that Daniel has any intention (of defending). I think that’s what it comes down to. If he had a timeline of like, ‘I’m going to fight Derrick Lewis at this time, and then in March I’m going to defend the 205 title,’ I think he’d still have it. But I think Jon Jones and Gustafsson fighting for it, he has no intention.”
Anthony Smith faces Volkan Oezdemir tomorrow night in the main event of UFC Moncton tomorrow night.
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Fight Night 138 fight card on fight night (click here), starting with the Fight Pass “Prelims” undercard bout at 6:30 p.m. ET, followed by the FOX Sports 1 “Prelims” undercard bouts at 8 p.m. ET, before the main card start time at 10 p.m. ET, also on FOX Sports 1.
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