Alexander Gustafsson and Anthony Smith faced each other in a light heavyweight clash earlier today (Saturday, June 1, 2019) inside the Ericsson Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden, only on ESPN+.
Smith stalked Gustafsson to open the bout, feinting a bit more than usual. Smith scored a big right hand first. Then a low kick. Gustafsson returned the kick. Another right hand from Smith scored, but Gustafsson checked his follow up low kick hard. A pair of lefts connected for “Lionheart.” Gustafsson landed a couple times to the lead leg. Smith slapped the lead leg with a kick. Gustafsson poked at the belly with a snap kick. An overhand from Smith glanced off the chin of Gustafsson. A jab from Gustafsson struck the mid-section. Smith dug a low kick into his foe’s thigh, but Gustafsson answered with a hard left hook, his most significant strike of the round.
Smith swung wild to start the second, while Gustafsson attacked the lead leg. Decent low kick from the Swede right before he ducked a right hand swing. Feinted right hand into a calf kick from Gustafsson. Smith with another big right hand miss; Gustafsson smacked his ribs with a right in answer. Solid left round kick from Smith into the block of Gustafsson. Smith began to look a bit confused three minutes into the round, just before unleashing a solid couple punches and kick while Gustafsson was trapped on the fence. Gustafsson was unbothered though, answering with a left hook and couple clean jabs. Smith dug the body with a left hook. Gustafsson began pressuring a bit more, but neither man was landing too much.
The third round saw both men bring some energy. Smith landed a significant right hand, prompting Gustafsson to answer back with a pair of punches. Afterward, Gustafsson ripped a nice combo punctuated by a low kick. Smith answered back with a hard low kick of his own. Strong right hand from the Swede. Smith flurried back when his foe’s back hit the fence. Much higher activity in the opening couple minutes of the third. Body kick from Smith. Jab from Gustafsson. The two traded low kicks once again. Left hook to the body from Gustafsson. Gustafsson kept looking for a front kick to the chin that just isn’t there, but his follow up calf kick did score. Smith landed a hard low kick, Gustafsson answered with a crisp jab. More low kicks from each man. Hard left body kick from Gustafsson folds Smith over a bit, which allowed the Swede to score a clinch takedown into side control. Gustafsson controls top position for the final seconds of the third round.
Quick low kicks from Gustafsson began the championship rounds. Smith stung Gustafsson with a decent right hand. Jabs from the Swede. Smith targeted the body with a hook. More lead hand work from the Swede. A flubbed takedown attempt from Smith saw Gustafsson fall to the mat, and Smith quickly climbed onto his back. Gustafsson built up into a tripod, hoping to slowly shake Smith off. Smith responded by going double underhooks, which flattened Gustafsson back to the mat. Immediately, Smith went after the neck, hipping in hard and stretching Gustafsson out below him.
“Lionheart” found the neck and forced the submission. The momentum may have been in Gustafsson’s corner in the fourth, but it only took one bad mistake from Gustafsson for Smith to jump on his back and force the finish.
Results: Anthony Smith defeats Alexander Gustafsson via fourth-round submission (rear-naked choke)
For complete UFC Stockholm results and coverage click here.