Anthony Smith and Ryan Spann won’t be sitting down to grab a beer anytime soon.
UFC 281 this past weekend (Nov. 12, 2022) saw “Superman” Spann score one of his best career highlights, decimating Dominick Reyes with a quick first round knockout (watch highlights). Afterward, Spann let it be known he wanted to fight someone in the top 5 next, but excluded all numbers aside from No. 5, Smith.
A pairing would be a rematch between the Light Heavyweight contenders. Since Spann’s Sept. 2021 first round rear-naked choke loss to Smith (watch highlights), he’s won two straight over Ion Cutelaba and the aforementioned Reyes, who were both coming off losses. Therefore, Smith doesn’t see any reason to give his rival what he desires.
“I don’t know what happened in our fight that left him with any kind of confidence that he can still beat me or that he deserves a rematch,” Smith said on the Believe You Me podcast. “I had him on ice skates until he was shooting takedowns, I strangled him, and then stood over his body, remining him what he was going to do to me. So, he’s my b—ch forever and he knows it.
“Eventually, he may work himself into a situation where we’re gonna rematch, but I already fought down when I gave him an opportunity,” he continued. “Until he does something where I go, ‘Oh, wow. That was super impressive,’ he can f—k off. Him being an asshole didn’t work out for him the last time. He barely handled the first fight, how’s he gonna handle the second?”
Smith’s victory over Spann was his last, having fought once since. At UFC 277 in July 2022, Smith suffered a second round technical knockout loss to Magomed Ankalaev and broke his leg in the process, providing “Lionheart” with some scary health complications. He hinted during the discussion that he’s all set to return, however, with his next fight announcement coming soon.