PostFight Analysis Gustafsson vs Smith


Chael Sonnen


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first takeaway great match right I mean that was a really both guys did what they were supposed to do there was you know if you're training if you ever want to be a fighter I guess let's say this you're 9 10 11 years old and you're watching fight and Gus is your favorite fighter you think I want to be I want to do this someday I won't I want to be just like him that's gonna be really hard to do I'll just tell you right now you can go learn those punches and those kicks but Gus does things that can't be taught you cannot teach a light heavyweight to be 6 foot 3 you can't teach a light heavyweight to move his feet and move laterally side to side decided Nevers forward never straight back side to side left and right then he puts the punches and kicks and then he's got incredible cardio and can do this all night long you know Gus is a really intimidating fight and I fought Michael Bisping and I make the comparison of the two in that neither one of them is really looking to go shut your lights off they're looking to go and hurt you to hit you and to kick you over and over all night long it's a really intimidating thing to be in there with somebody like that so Anthony goes into any steps in you can look at the X's and O's on paper right we have seen that big tall guy versus a shorter more powerful guy we've seen that matchup and the recipes pretty simple big guys got to keep his feet moving keep it with the other punches little guy get inside go to the body come upstairs with power shots yeah I get it to the point of nausea to the point that it's boring but it's also true and that's why you always hear that when you got one guy with a meaningful height and reach over another guy who's a more stocky and more powerful by comparison it's just true so they have what I will call for lack of a better term I despise the term feeling out process but I must use it they have a bit of a feeling out process for the first couple of rounds about eight or nine or 10 minutes where they're both trying to get used to this Gus is trying to get used to going left and going right while keeping something in Anthony's face and Anthony's used to trying to slip those punches and come in and get some shots off himself surprisingly where Anthony was doing his best work with range was with some of his kicks he would miss his punches and then land a kick right to Gus's head that was a little bit of a surprise and somewhere right around that eight nine ten minute mark uh Anthony started going backwards and that was a big surprise look you cannot give up reach on a guy not have the movement and the footwork advantage on a guy and go backwards it is the trifecta for a disaster to happen and he started to have some rough minutes I'm talking about Anthony started to have some rough minutes they end up in a scramble Gus gets on top basically finishes the round there that's the only one Clint round that was really clear and I think that the judges I haven't seen those officials to scorecards I think that Gus had probably won each round they were just close that's all I'm arguing for in case you missed it they were just very competitive rounds but they were favoring Gus go into the fourth round it's more of the same except all of a sudden Anthony's not backing up anymore I don't know why he started doing that he started to have a few bad moments where now Gus is really taking control had the reach had the movement and now he's backing him up not good somewhere in between with the corners that gets worked out now it's starting to look a little bit more like the first and second round which is just a dogfight but Gus's may be being a little bit busier so they get another dust-up clenched up wrestling exchange Anthony comes out on top Gus never moved again that's a slight exaggeration by me but only slight I mean Gus never moved again it was very peculiar for me as a guy who's followed Alexander Gustafson's career seen every one of his fights he's hell to keep down right I mean see Daniel Cormier versus Gus he's hard to get there but he's really hard to keep there go see John Jones versus Gus part one hard to get there really really hard to keep him he could protect himself he knows how to use that length he knows how to stretch you out with the legs he knows how to get distance he knows how to scramble back up to his feet so when I tell you that it was noticeable that Gus never moved again while I am exaggerating boy by Gus's standards he never moved again he got taken down face down never went to guard no half guard none of this business look like he was trying to push up to his feet even look like Anthony was slipping off the side a little bit Anthony's hips weren't perfectly where they needed to be Anthony was saving himself by being under the armpits so he's able to maintain that position and then it just kind of went bad to worse for Gus where it looked as though he was trying to build up and he had a cage there to help him now the cage can go both ways but in this position this was going to help him he just never moved he just simply never moving all of a sudden Anthony's hips that were on the side now a sudden there dead center creates a lot of weight and pressure flattens Gus that Gus is now going the wrong way going the other way and eventually Anthony finds a choke that does never never tap to just went all the way out I was watching as a viewer going Gus that was a really good fight you were winning the rounds right you're winning the rounds it's it's two top five guys on earth and you just won multiple Gus is looking really good but there's a spot in a position which was him being on bottom which was reminisce reminiscent of his previous fight which happened to be against Jon Jones a position we had seen him in many times before in the previous fight with John Jose and he did just fine there but when John got on top Gus offered little to no resistance little to no defense or offense and he did it again and I think it something's going on there's something going on with Gus that we don't know about whether he's got a rib out or he's got a dit he's got some kind of an injury some kind of something that it's making it hard for him in those spots that's what it appeared to me as the viewer and I think of that I'm right and I will also tell we'll probably never know but I think I'm right on that okay fast forward stories not done Gus then up and retires he says you know what I'm retired I just don't have it anyway and me anymore and that's always a tough thing to react to I mean you got to take a guy at his word this is a volunteer army nobody has to be in there he's currently a main event in a sold-out arena with a top five ranking fighting a nether top five fighter I mean but it he won three rounds he won fifteen sixteen minutes of this fight just from where I'm sitting in well I'm watching what Gus you most certainly do have it you look great but I don't want to argue with you perhaps my initial hypothesis that he's dealing with an injury is false and it's simply an effort issue and when he's on bottom he goes I don't want to get up there's no I do it too hard takes too much work I don't wanna do anyway maybe that's that we're to interpret that and by the way I hope that because of my tone I don't sound critical at all cuz I'm not I really enjoyed this match I just get a frustration I think for the after I'm frustrated for Gus if he feels as though he doesn't have it anymore when he just sold out an arena in a main event in front of his hometown against the top five guy oh and by the way he just won three rounds there's only five rounds in the whole contest he just won three of them that would be where I'd want to push Bank of Gus make sure you give yourself some credit that was a hard ask to fight Anthony Smith the reason that you got asked to do it is because nobody else wanted to and you won a lot of minutes at what you do really well you moved left you moved right you took big power shots you stayed on your feet there ended up being a scramble where he got taken down and them was frozen in that position if that is a physical thing where we could fix that real fast real fat a lot of ways to fix that if it's physical if it's mental and it's something where listen I've fired my bullets I don't have anymore in the chamber I'm tired I just don't want to do it mentally hats off I get it and good for you for coming to terms with it good for you for realizing it coming to terms with it and if he does in fact step away it just seems to me as though this may be a situation okay where he needs these give him some time he went from world title fight he came off with long injury goes right into a world title fight right back in front of his home to me there was a lot of pressure it's a lot of things happening there and physically he looked the same he looked very good aside from one position so maybe he just needs a minute