Prior to this fight, Alexander Gustafsson most recent bout was a lost in a rematch to Jon Jones in the main event of UFC 232 in what some believed could be Gustafsson’s last opportunity at a title shot. When his next bout with Anthony Smith was signed, Gustafsson hinted at retirement by stating if he did not defeat Smith, maybe he wouldn’t “have it anymore.”’ After losing to Smith, Gustafsson would announce that the show was indeed over, dropping both gloves to the canvas and making his exit from Ericsson Globe and active mixed martial arts competition.
The first two rounds featured the same Gustafsson movement, but a more active Anthony Smith. Gustafsson was able to outstrike Smith in the third round, however, along with a takedown to seal the round. But in the fourth round, Gustafsson would initiate a grappling exchange that would mark the beginning of the end for the Swede, with Smith eventually flattening Gustafsson out and earning the submission victory via rear naked choke.
After the loss, Alexander Gustafsson retired in the Octagon and confirmed the retirement in a post-fight interview following the bout. Jon Jones would post a video of the Octagon retirement on his Twitter page and then express doubt that we have really seen the last of his toughest opponent:
“Honestly I don’t believe you but if you’re serious, thank you for everything. You held the division to a standard and made us better. Go kick ass with that Family,” Jones tweeted.
Do you believe Alexander Gustafsson is really retired?