Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Anthony Smith Disapproves Of Blachowicz’s Conduct After Rakić Win

UFC light heavyweight Anthony Smith has taken issue with how fellow contender Jan Blachowicz has acted since his victory over Aleksandar Rakić last month.

In the main event of UFC Vegas 54, European elites Blachowicz and Rakić collided inside the Octagon. While the Polish powerhouse was looking to rebound from his disappointing title defeat against Glover Teixeira, the Austrian was hoping to secure his first championship opportunity.

In an anticlimactic end, the pair’s headliner was cut short in round three when Rakić suffered a serious knee injury, which gave Blachowicz a TKO victory.

While Rakić was left requiring surgery on a torn ACL and looking ahead to a lengthy period on the sidelines, Blachowicz exited the Apex back in the win column and believing that he’d secured the chance to regain the title next time out.

While some would attach an asterisk to the result given his opponent’s injury, the #2-ranked contender sees things differently. During the post-fight press conference, Blachowicz suggested that his body was simpler tougher than Rakić’s on the night.

“Of course, I’m a fighter, I’m a warrior. It’s better when you win by TKO, KO, submission, clean,” said Blachowicz. “But my body was tougher tonight, that’s it, end of story. I was ready for third, fourth, five rounds; he was not.”

Smith: Blachowicz Doesn’t Get To Demand A Title Shot After That Win

One man who firmly disagrees with Blachowicz’s stance is his fellow top-five light heavyweight contender Smith.

During a recent appearance on The MMA Hour, “Lionheart,” who is looked to secure a title shot of his own when he faces Magomed Ankalaev on July 30, said that he’d behave very differently had he picked up a victory in the same way as the Pole did last month.

“Listen, I’m not the biggest fan of Rakić and he’s not the biggest fan of me. But in my opinion, he was winning the fight before he got injured,” said Smith. “I guess I just always kick back to how I would react. Like, if I got the title in a way that was other than winning it, I would never hold the belt. We talked about it with Aljo (Aljamain Sterling) before he really won it. You don’t walk round with the title if you didn’t actually win it.

“If you win a fight off an injury default, you don’t get to go politic your way into things off that win,” added Smith. “It just doesn’t work like that. Maybe it will work, who knows? But it’s not how I would probably do it.”

Immediately after his bounce-back triumph, Blachowicz staked his claim to face the winner of UFC 275‘s main event between Glover Teixeira and Jiří Procházka, something that was co-signed by the now-former champion Teixeira.

The 39-year-old even made the trip to Singapore for this past weekend’s pay-per-view, where he appeared to have a heated interaction with newly-crowned titleholder Procházka following the Czech star’s memorable victory.

But while Blachowicz perhaps feels his shot is in the bag, Smith is hoping to change that with an impressive performance at UFC 277.

UFC President Dana White also dealt a blow to the Polish light heavyweight’s hopes pre-UFC 275 when he suggested that the bout between Smith and Ankalaev will serve as a title eliminator.

Do you agree with Anthony Smith’s take on Jan Blachowicz?

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