What Does Anthony Smith Have Planned For Aleksandar Rakic?
Anthony Smith (33-15) believes he can’t afford to make a mistake against Aleksandar Rakic (12-2).
On August 29, Smith and Rakic will collide in a light heavyweight scrap. The 205-pound collision will take place inside the UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada. It’ll headline UFC Vegas 8 and the main card is set to air live on ESPN+.
MMAJunkie.com caught up with Smith ahead of fight night. “Lionheart” made it clear that he’s aware of the threat Rakic poses and plans to exercise caution.
“I think at this point I need that danger factor. I need that guy that’ll keep you up at night. You have something to think about when you’re at the gym. It keeps me sharp. There’s no getting lazy with him. I got caught getting a little distracted and being lazy in the Glover fight, and look what happened. I can’t do that with a guy that’s as explosive and as powerful as Aleksandar Rakic is.”
Smith continued, saying that Rakic proved his durability against Volkan Oezdemir back on December 21, 2019.
“The Volkan fight shows he’s got some toughness there. He’s got some toughness, but once he got cracked and Volkan weathered the storm, you didn’t see Rakic pushing forward like he typically does. He wasn’t bullying Volkan like he does everybody else. So I think that’s a little bit indicative of where he kind of is in his skill level.”
Smith is hoping to rebound from his May 13 loss to Glover Teixeira. “Lionheart” was stopped by Teixeira in the fifth round via TKO. Smith finds himself as a +235 underdog going into his bout with Rakic according to 5Dimes.
This will be a significant bout that could potentially shake things up in the UFC light heavyweight rankings. Smith is the number five-ranked UFC 205-pounder. Rakic holds the number eight spot. If Rakic can defeat Smith, he’ll likely make his debut on the top five list.