Newly announced UFC light heavyweight title contender Anthony Smith believes he has already figured out Jon Jones’ biggest weakness.
It was recently revealed that surging challenger Smith would be the next contender to Jones’ recently regained title. The title shot was granted to “Lionheart” thanks to his recent streak of dominance where he finished Volkan Oezdemir, Shogun Rua, and Rashad Evans last year. But Jones is a different animal altogether. It could be stated he’s a once-in-a-lifetime fighter.
Jones proved he’s still at the top by easily defeating Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 232 in a third-round TKO stoppage. He’s only lost one total mixed martial arts (MMA) bout, and that was disqualification at the beginning of his UFC run. Smith, however, has lost 13 times in his 44-fight MMA career dating back to 2008. Despite those clear discrepancies in resumé, Smith believes it’s Jones who is delusional for thinking himself to be unbeatable.
He dove into Jones’ supposed arrogant delusions while speaking to MMAjunkie recently:
“Jon’s biggest attribute is his genuine delusion. Jon is genuinely so delusional and so arrogant that he is unbeatable that it works in his favor, and he almost creates the illusion that he is. He fights with this complete arrogance and disregard for his opponents. And if he loses that, he loses a lot of his ability.”
Is He Underestimating?
Jones has most certainly been accused of being arrogant. But having disregard for his opponents isn’t always added
One big thing Jones may not ultimately possess is pure knockout power. Smith almost definitely has him outdone in that department. In his last six UFC wins, five have come by some form of brutal knockout. Jones has never been knocked out, and he looked almost untouchable against Gustafsson. The only thing standing in the way of Jones vs. Smith happening is Jones’ licensing issues with the NSAC. He’s expected to be licensed at their January 29 hearing.
Jones vs. Smith should move forward as Jones looks to make up for lost time and defend his title early in 2019. Is he truly underestimated Smith due to his vast arrogance? Or is Smith clutching at straws in this assessment?