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While this isn’t a typical main event, it’s certainly an intriguing one at 205 pounds. Anthony Smith is a striker who has made a living off enduring punishment and mounting comebacks. His heart alone is an intangible that many fighters wish they had. A finisher in every sense of the word, Smith has won thirty two of his thirty five wins via stoppage. That’s practically a 90% finishing rate, which is scary thought for anyone standing across the octagon from Smith. The same could be said about Ryan Spann, who primarily is a striker. With excellent size and an evolving wrestling game, Spann has started to blossom inside the octagon.
As for a prediction, I’m going with Spann. The rising Light Heavyweight holds a 5.5 reach advantage against Smith, which will complicate things on the feet for the former title challenger. Spann also notably doesn’t carry fifty one fights of punishment with him into this fight. While Smith is still young at 33 years old, it’s only a matter of time before his durability no longer is an asset. Throw in the fact that Smith has leaky takedown defense and Spann has a dangerous submission game, and I see clear advantages for ‘Superman’ in this fight. In the end, I see Spann’s reach and power hurting Smith on the feet, allowing him to get an advantageous position and lock in his twelfth submission victory.