ALEXANDER GUSTAFSSON VS. ANTHONY SMITH HEADLINES UFC FIGHT NIGHT 152

A couple of the top-ranked light heavyweight contenders in the entire world are set to square off in the spring, and below are my first thoughts on this critical matchup in 205lbs. Alexander Gustafsson vs. Anthony Smith, UFC Fight Night 152 With both guys coming from reductions to Jon Jones in their past respective outings, the UFC matchmakers have gone matched up Alexander Gustafsson and Anthony Smith for the primary event of UFC Fight Night 152. The card occurs June 1 at Ericsson Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden, also this five-round headlining bout was first reported by ESPN’s Brett Okamoto. At first glance, this is a fight which makes sense with both men needing to rebound following their losses to Jones. Gustafsson suffered a TKO defeat to Jones in the primary event of UFC 232, while Smith lost a lopsided decision to Jones in UFC 235. Together with the UFC needing a principal event for its return to Sweden, it naturally made sense for Gustafsson to headline the card, and for Smith it’s an opportunity to acquire another major event fight after years of being a journeyman in the sport. At precisely the same time, however, it’s very surprising to see Smith get back in the cage soon and signal a bout agreement not even two weeks after having beat up real good by Jones in UFC 235. Smith didn’t mount much crime in that struggle and bore the brunt of 25 minutes of Jones’ attacks, and later said he wished to take some time away to rest and unwind after a busy schedule in 2018 and 2019. Certainly, though, the allure of getting another main event slot against a top competition like Gustafsson was too much for Smith to pass on. Gustafsson (18-5) is 10-5 overall in the UFC and prior to the loss to Jones had won back-to-back conflicts over Glover Teixeira and Jan Blachowicz. Always a bridesmaid, Gustafsson has been among the best contenders at 205lbs for much of the 2010s but has never been in a position to win the title despite three fractures in itagainst Jones and one against Daniel Cormier. Smith (31-14) is 7-4 overall in the UFC but is 3-1 since moving up to light heavyweight, with wins over Mauricio”Shogun” Rua, Rashad Evans and Volkan Oezdemir winning him a shot at Jones. He revealed against Jones that he’s simply not on the champ’s level, but he still remains a very good contender at 205lbs. As for the opening betting line with this fight, I feel the oddsmakers will set Gustafsson as the favorite here, although I doubt he unlocks over 2-to-1. Smith has revealed since moving up to light heavyweight he has more knockout power and durability in his new weight class, and that I would not totally count him out of this fight. Still, Gustafsson is the more skilled fighter and will obviously be battling in his hometown that ought to give him a boost. Regardless of who wins, this ought to be a very exciting matchup between two of the top dogs at the UFC’s light heavyweight division. Disclaimer: This page contains affiliate links and MMA Odds Breaker is going to be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on the links.

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ALEXANDER GUSTAFSSON VS. ANTHONY SMITH HEADLINES UFC FIGHT NIGHT 152

Two of the top-ranked light heavyweight contenders in the entire world are set to square off in the spring, and below are my initial thoughts on this critical matchup at 205lbs. Alexander Gustafsson vs. Anthony Smith, UFC Fight Night 152 With both men coming from reductions to Jon Jones in their last individual excursions, the UFC matchmakers have gone matched up Alexander Gustafsson and Anthony Smith to the main event of UFC Fight Night 152. The card occurs June 1 in Ericsson Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden, and this five-round headlining bout was first reported by ESPN’s Brett Okamoto. At first glance, this is a fight which makes sense with the two men needing to rebound after their losses to Jones. Gustafsson suffered a TKO defeat to Jones in the primary event of UFC 232, while Smith dropped a lopsided decision to Jones in UFC 235. Together with the UFC needing a principal event because of its return to Sweden, it naturally made sense for Gustafsson to headline the card, and for Smith it’s an opportunity to acquire another major event fight after years of being a journeyman from the game. At the exact same time, however, it is very surprising to see Smith get back into the cage soon and signal a bout agreement not two weeks after having beat up real good by Jones at UFC 235. Smith did not mount much offense in that fight and bore the brunt of 25 minutes of Jones’ attacks, and later said he wanted to take time away to rest and relax after a busy schedule in 2018 and 2019. Clearly, however, the allure of getting another main event slot against a leading competition like Gustafsson was too much for Smith to maneuver on. Gustafsson (18-5) is 10-5 overall from the UFC and prior to the loss to Jones had won back fights over Glover Teixeira and Jan Blachowicz. Always a bridesmaid, Gustafsson has been one of the top contenders in 205lbs for much of the 2010s but has never been in a position to win the title despite three fractures at it, two against Jones and one against Daniel Cormier. Smith (31-14) is 7-4 overall in the UFC but is 3-1 since moving up to light heavyweight, with wins over Mauricio”Shogun” Rua, Rashad Evans and Volkan Oezdemir winning him a shot Jones. He revealed against Jones that he’s just not about the champ’s degree, but he still remains a very solid contender at 205lbs. In terms of the opening betting line with this battle, I believe the oddsmakers will set Gustafsson as the favored here, although I doubt he unlocks over 2-to-1. Smith has revealed since moving up to light heavyweight he has more knockout power and endurance at his new weight class, and that I wouldn’t totally count him out of this fight. However, Gustafsson is the skilled fighter and will of course be battling in his hometown that ought to provide him a boost. Regardless of who wins, this ought to be a very exciting matchup between two of the greatest dogs at the UFC’s light heavyweight division. Disclaimer: This page contains affiliate links and MMA Odds Breaker is going to be paid if you make a purchase after clicking on the hyperlinks.

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