Anthony Smith experienced arguably the toughest loss of his career at the hands of Glover Teixeira on Wednesday, but he won the respect of Dominick Reyes.
Smith had a good first round in his fight with Teixeira, which headlined the recent UFC Jacksonville card, but the momentum began to swing out of his favor in round two. By the time the fourth round ended, Smith had been brutalized to the point of losing multiple teeth. The fight was finally and most mercifully stopped in the fifth round.
While this fight certainly didn’t go the way Smith planned, he more than lived up to his nickname “Lionheart,” hanging in there through a veritable blizzard of punishment from Teixeira.
His gutsiness earned him a bit of post-fight props from Reyes, who he could easily wind up fighting down the road.
Smith, lionheart suits you ⚔
— Dominick Reyes (@DomReyes) May 14, 2020
“Smith, Lionheart suits you,” Reyes wrote on Twitter on Thursday.
Prior to his lopsided loss to Teixeira, Smith was riding a career-best submission victory over multiple-time light heavyweight title challenger Alexander Gustafsson. This win was preceded by a decision loss to reigning UFC light heavyweight king Jon Jones.
Reyes, on the other hand, has not fought since he came up short in a February title fight with Jones. While the judges awarded that fight to Jones, many fans and pundits—and UFC President Dana White himself—believed that the decision was backwards and that Reyes should have been named the victor.
Ever since his war with Jones, Reyes has been chomping at the bit for a rematch. While Jones has been teasing a fight with Jan Blachowicz, and even a heavyweight showdown with Francis Ngannou, he’s also added that he’s willing to rematch Reyes for the right price.
What do you think of this classy message Dominick Reyes sent Anthony Smith?