“I’m kind of liking this Jan Blachowicz fight,” Anthony Smith discloses pulling out from Aleksandar Rakic fight in December, targets Jan Blachowicz fight now

Anthony Smith reveals about knee injury forcing him to pull out from Aleksandar Rakic in December, targets to face Jan Blachowicz now.

Anthony Smith and Jan Blachowicz
Anthony Smith and Jan Blachowicz

The UFC Light Heavyweight division witnessed a major shakeup of things at the main event of UFC 267. Glover Teixeira defeated Jan Blachowicz via second-round submission and claimed the UFC Light Heavyweight title. With the new champion being crowned, other title contenders are planning their way to get a title shot.

One of them is a former UFC Light Heavyweight title contender, Anthony Smith. ‘Lion Heart’ recently secured a victory against Ryan Spann on UFC Fight Night: Smith vs Spann and he revealed the promotion offered him a rematch against the number 3rd ranked UFC Light Heavyweight fighter, Aleksandar Rakic.

But Smith is facing some problem with his knee and he needs more time before returning back to Octagon. In his latest interview with Ariel Helwani for MMA Hour, Anthony Smith says, “I knew that there was something going on with my knee, I didn’t know how bad it was. I’ve been kind of dealing with it for a little while anyway, over probably the last five fights.”

“Like I haven’t been able to run in training camp at all. We’ve had to kind of work my strength and conditioning around my knee. I kind of tweaked it in the fight when I was taking Ryan Spann’s back, but I didn’t want to take the hook out and lose the position. So I just left it in there, I kind of heel-hooked myself essentially and tore my LCL. It wasn’t a complete tear.”

Smith continued, “We did stem cells, we did PRP injections. Thought I was going to be down for eight weeks, not a big deal. But because I already had other knee problems, we thought it was a perfect opportunity to go in, clean out a lot of the cobwebs and cartilage and scar tissue.”

“Just a lot of the problems I’ve been having with it. It wasn’t going to extend my time off anymore because that’s about a month in itself. It’s early enough that it wouldn’t have extended it anymore. “Long story short, I end up having a lot more problems after the scope and got staph infection in the joint, now I’m on IV antibiotics for another month, then I have to go back in.” {H/t MMA Fighting}

Anthony Smith claims UFC already offered him a fight against Jan Blachowicz

Aleksandar Rakic and Anthony Smith
Aleksandar Rakic and Anthony Smith

Aleksandar Rakic is one of the strongest contenders for the UFC Light Heavyweight title, after Jiri Prochazka and now after Anthony Smith is not able to compete in December, that’s why UFC might be looking for a replacement for him. As much as Smith wanted this fight, he is happy that the promotion is offering him a bigger name, i.e. Jan Blachowicz, who just lost his title at UFC 267.

Anthony Smith says, “I’m kind of liking this Jan Blachowicz fight, The UFC brought it to me that night. He wants to fight again. He wants to fight soon. I’m not crazy injured. I’m just dealing with a little stuff, infections, so I mean as long as we can get this infection cleared up, I don’t think February’s out of the question.”

“I love that fight. I like that guy. I want the Rakic fight. I want that back. But I don’t think he wants to wait, which is fine, if he wants to go on and fight someone else, that’s fine as well. I like the Jan Blachowicz fight.” {H/t MMA Fighting}

Also Read: “He’s a nightmare for anybody,” Henry Cejudo on UFC Light-heavyweight champion Glover Teixeira following UFC 267 win.