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‘It’ll never happen again’ — Anthony Smith addresses UFC 283 weight miss

The one-time title challenger has no excuses for missing weight as the backup fighter at UFC 283 this past Saturday. 

Anthony Smith at ceremonial weigh-ins for UFC 261.
Anthony Smith at ceremonial weigh-ins for UFC 261.
Photo by Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC

Anthony Smith is offering no excuses for missing weight as the backup fighter at UFC 283 this past Saturday.

If something had happened to Glover Teixeira or Jamahal Hill ahead of their fight for the vacant UFC light heavyweight championship, then Smith was supposed to have served as the replacement in case of emergency. That meant, as the backup fighter, ‘Lionheart’ had to step on the scales along with the rest of the contracted talent for the UFC PPV.

However, when Smith made it to the weigh-ins, he was 209 pounds in his first attempt—four pounds over the light heavyweight limit. In his second attempt, Smith was 206.5 pounds, which led to his first official weight miss in the UFC. So what happened?

“I can’t even tell you what happened,” said Smith on a recent edition of the Believe You Me podcast. “Because no matter what I say, there’s a reason, there’s a lot of s—t that goes on behind the scenes that nobody sees. I was in shape, I was really low a couple weeks ago, and s—t happens, and I have no excuses. I had a job, I had to go down and make weight to be the alternate if something happened. To be fair, I was still there. I was still ready to fight if something happened [or] if someone had to pull out. I still would’ve fought, I just wouldn’t have been eligible to win the title. But I have no excuses.”

Teixeira and Hill weighed in successfully, so Smith wasn’t needed. And though the UFC ‘weren’t super happy’ with him, Smith apologized and vowed never to miss weight again.

“It wasn’t for a lack of effort,” said Smith. “I spent 48 straight hours cutting weight. It wasn’t a lack of effort. No one saw me on the scale looking like I had an additional 20 pounds to lose. I got close, but it wasn’t close enough, and that’s my fault — it’ll never happen again.

“I’ll be the first one on the scale for my next fight,” continued Smith. “And I’m not a serial weight-misser. It happens, and it wasn’t on purpose. I apologized to everyone that it mattered to.”

Smith also addressed the response to his missing weight. Since stepping into an analyst role, the one-time title challenger has not shied away from criticizing those who come in heavy for their fights.

Despite finding himself in a similar situation, Smith said his thoughts on fighters missing weight stayed the same.

“I’ve been an absolute asshole about people missing weight,” said Smith. “You’ve got one job: You’ve got to show up on weight. That’s the easiest part of the job, right? So I stand by everything I’ve ever said about everybody else, that you have to make weight, that it’s not an option, and I’ll accept whatever s—t is coming my way. It doesn’t change my perspective on anything.”

Smith has not fought since suffering a second-round TKO loss to Magomed Ankalaev at UFC 277 in July.