If you ask most observers, UFC 275’s headliner title fight between Glover Teixeira and Jiri Prochazka was a sight to behold. It was a full display of mixed martial arts, with Prochazka winning via submission in the last 28 seconds of round five.
Both men even took home $50K for Fight of the Night honors as fans are already throwing it in the hat as a potential Fight of the Year candidate for 2022. But for others who saw it like former title contender Anthony Smith, it could by far be one of the worst performances for both Teixeira and Prochazka.
“To be honest, I think both of those guys had the worst performances of their life at the same time. I really do,” Smith told Ariel Helwani in his most recent appearance on The MMA Hour.
“For the first time, Glover looked a little old. For the first time in a while, because that’s not the Glover I got. That’s not the one Thiago Santos got. I don’t know who that guy was, but fortunately for him, I think Prochazka had one of the worst performances he could have possibly had too.
“They just made terrible decisions. Like the fight IQ, if you would have put it together, it wouldn’t have been in the double digits during the fight. They both just didn’t fight smart at all.”
“Lionheart” is basing his assessment on his own experience fighting Teixeira in 2020.
“Glover was mounted several times. He had [Prochazka’s] back several times, he had him deep in submissions a couple times. He lost position. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen Glover lose positions like that before. I know the deficit between those two guys in the grappling department is huge,” Smith said.
“I’m a high-level [Brazilian jiu-jitsu] black belt and I’ve submitted several world champions. I grapple at a very f–ng high level and I was stuck like f–ng Chuck [with Teixeira].
“I don’t know what happened, where the Glover was that had me stuck on my back. Where was that guy? Because that’s not the same guy that fought on Saturday night.”
Smith later clarified that he was in no way hating on either fighter. But he says he was making his observations with his analyst hat on.
“Before anyone roasts me for talking shit or talking bad — I’m not being critical. I think that they both fought with bravery,” he said. ‘Those were brave performances from both of those guys and I couldn’t rave about it more, but I’m also an analyst and I can analyze their performances and they were awful.
“As far as the Xs and Os, their coaches are not happy, I’ll tell you that. From an excitement standpoint watching it, it couldn’t have been f–ng better, but as far as the technical stuff that went on, it was all bad.”
Prochazka was also heavily critical of his own performance, specifically pointing out his “laziness” in certain moments. Nonetheless, he is the newly-crowned champion as he extends his win streak in the UFC to three and improves to a record 29-3-1.