- Anthony Smith, a 31-year-old American, was given such a beating Wednesday he complained that he was losing teeth.
- Smith was fighting Glover Teixeira, who is 40, at a UFC Fight Night event in Jacksonville, Florida.
- While Smith started the fight well, by the third round, Teixeira was landing strikes so heavy that observing MMA media members tweeted their furore that the bout was still going on.
- But Smith’s corner, and the referee, allowed Smith to continue until the fifth round, by which point he wasn’t landing anything, at all, and was withdrawn from the contest.
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A veteran fighter gave his younger UFC opponent such a beating that his “head literally no longer looked human,” one MMA editor said Wednesday.
It all went down at a “UFC Fight Night” event in Jacksonville, Florida, as the world’s premier mixed martial arts firm continues operations in the middle of a pandemic.
After a two-month coronavirus-enforced hiatus, elite MMA returned on May 9 with a UFC pay-per-view event which was headlined by Justin Gaethje’s thumping fifth round stoppage win over Tony Ferguson.
The headlines keep coming for the UFC as Anthony Smith, a 31-year-old American who challenged for the light heavyweight world title last year, was resoundingly beaten by a seemingly ageless warrior in Glover Teixeira, who is 40, on May 14.
Smith had rebounded from his UFC title loss to Jones in 2019 by submitting Alexander Gustafsson in his opponent’s backyard, Stockholm, and while he began the Teixera bout promisingly,landing 45% of his strikes in the first round alone, it was not long before the momentum switched and Teixera began to dominate.
In the third round of the scheduled five, Smith landed just one punch compared to Teixeira’s 43 of 54. Teixeira was thriving and while Smith was surviving, the escalating beat-down produced uncomfortable viewing.
Dan Stupp, the managing editor for The Athletic MMA, tweeted: “Anthony Smith’s head literally no longer looks human.”
Anthony Smith's head literally no longer looks human.
— Dann Stupp (@DannStupp) May 14, 2020
Smith survived the third round but by this point he was bleeding from his ear. In the fourth round, Teixeira’s out-struck Smith by a ratio of 3:1 and the losing athlete leaked blood all over the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena canvas as he was hit with elbows and dragged to the floor.
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) May 14, 2020
Between the fourth and fifth rounds, Smith could be heard telling his corner that his “teeth are falling out” but they did not appear to listen to the fighter, simply saying “yup” while patching him up to send him back into battle for the final round.
Watch Smith complain about losing teeth right here:
— UFC (@ufc) May 14, 2020
Renowned members of the MMA media failed to understand why the corner and referee did not stop the action by this point.
The CBS Sports reporter and presenter Brian Campbell said: “Smith’s corner needs to stop this. Teixeira has done enough.”
Smith's corner needs to stop this. Teixeira has done enough. #UFCJacksonville
— Brian Campbell (@BCampbell) May 14, 2020
The Athletic MMA writer Chuck Mindenhall tweeted: “Jason Herzog one of those referees that burns steak just to make sure it’s done.”
Jason Herzog one of those referees that burns steak just to make sure it's done.
— Chuck Mindenhall (@ChuckMindenhall) May 14, 2020
The Sirius XM radio host Luke Thomas said: “The problem with the intelligent defence standard is that a fighter can show decision-making while still taking inadvisable abuse. There is no reason this fight should see another round.”
The problem with the intelligent defense standard is that a fighter can show decision making while still taking inadvisable abuse. There is no reason this fight should see another round.
— Luke Thomas (@lthomasnews) May 14, 2020
The American welterweight Michael Chiesa tweeted: “Throw the towel or don’t let him out for the 5th. Smith is injured badly.”
Throw the towel or don’t let him out for the 5th. Smith is injured badly. #UFCJAX
— Michael Chiesa (@MikeMav22) May 14, 2020
But Smith went on to fight in the fifth, a round in which he failed to land a single punch and had to instead take another 19 strikes until the fight was eventually stopped.
It was over, finally.
Teixeira got his win and was seen talking to the UFC boss Dana White through the Octagon fence, asking if the brutal victory was enough to be rewarded with a financial bonus.
Indeed, it was. Teixeira won an additional $US50,000 for the beating.