Anthony Smith moved to 3-0 as a light heavyweight in the UFC when he defeated Volkan Oezdemir by submission in the main event of UFC Fight Night Moncton.
A victorious Smith believes everything went according to plan on Saturday Night, with a few minor exceptions.
“The game plan went pretty close to exactly how I thought it was going to, I did make some mistakes as far as my approach. We focused a lot on wanting to make him work the entire time, but I think I let him work more than I made him work. I think I kind of laid back a little bit and kind of let him do his thing too much, I wish I would’ve pressured him a little bit more and I think I would’ve been able to gas him a little bit more and probably gas myself a little bit less,” says Smith in an exclusive interview with Fightful’s James Lynch.
Smith’s three victories since moving up to light heavyweight have come over Rashad Evans, Mauricio Rua and the aforementioned Oezdemir.
There could be a shot at the UFC Light Heavyweight Title in Smith’s future and that could come against Jon Jones, a fighter that Smith is already game planning for.
“I think I match up with Jon Jones well, I think I match his size physically. He;s got some reach issues that we definitely have to deal with, but I think everybody in the UFC has a reach issue they’re gonna deal with with Jon Jones. I got some things I got to work on as far as my conditioning and stuff like that, I think a lot of the conditioning issues in the Volkan fight…I think it came down to the pace and Volkan fights at a really high pace. You gotta match that or he’s gonna run you over, I kind of deviated from the plan a little bit and kind of started going off. I took some leg kicks, its hard to move around and it makes it hard to do things. When your struggling to do things, it definitely messes with your tank a little bit. I think that Jon Jones it hittable, I think that I can pressure Jon Jones enough to disrupt his rhythm. I think that in order for Jon Jones to fight well, he has to fight with a rhythm. He sits on the outside and he dictates the dance and you can’t let him do that,” says Smith.
Jones and Alexander Gustafsson battle for the soon to be vacant UFC Light Heavyweight Title in the UFC 232 main event, which is set for December 29.