Last month ESPN’s Ariel Helwani reported that UFC broadcaster Jimmy Smith would be looking for a new home in 2019.
Smith signed a one-year deal with the UFC on January 12, 2018, after seven years with Bellator MMA. However, earlier this morning (Tues. January 1, 2019) Smith took to Twitter to shed light on the situation. He revealed the UFC has declined to re-sign him once his deal expires. He will, in fact, be looking for a new home this year:
“Now that the New Year has arrived I’m afraid I have to announce that the UFC has declined to re-sign me and my time with the promotion has come to an end. I just want to thank everyone at the promotion who made me feel welcome and appreciate at every single show.”
“I tried my utmost to show the fighters the respect they deserved for giving their lives to this sport and hope they felt that when they heard what I had to say.
“The UFC fans were truly amazing and I wish I could thank each and every one of you for your support and even your criticism because it made me strive to be better. Wishing everyone a great 2019 and on to the next fight…Adios Amigos”
The UFC recently decided to bring retired former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping up to their broadcast booth. He’ll join fellow current and former champions such as Daniel Cormier and Dominick Cruz. Also, UFC lightweight Paul Felder has been doing a great job of calling fights this year as well.
Of course, Jon Anik and Joe Rogan will remain onboard for the time being also. With that being said, it will be interesting to see where Smith ends up after a solid run with the UFC. He could always return to Bellator, or perhaps join a thriving up-and-coming promotion like ONE Championship.