Light heavyweight contender Anthony Smith has the biggest fight of his career on the horizon on Saturday when he faces No. 2 ranked Volkan Oezdemir in the UFC Fight Night 138 main event. A win would likely put him in line to face the winner of former champion Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson, who headline UFC 232 on Dec. 29 for the soon-to-be vacant 205-pound title.
Smith isn’t looking past Oezdemir by any means, but plans to stay ready if he wins on Saturday in case something happens that forces Jones or Gustafsson out of their December match-up.
“I think after this fight, I’m going to stay in good shape and keep training just in case something happens with the Jones and Gustafsson fight. You just never know what’s going to happen. This game is crazy, and weirder things have happened. I’ll stay ready to jump in if I need to,” Smith said while appearing on the UFC Unfiltered podcast.
Jones and Gustafsson have had to withdraw from scheduled bouts in the past for various reasons. Considering that history, Smith believes it’s a good idea to remain in fight shape.
“I’m fine with doing that, especially with these two. I got respect for them both, but historically, they’re not perfect on making it to their fights,” he said. “I’ll be there and be ready to step in if I have to.”