A high-stakes light heavyweight matchup between the surging, #4 ranked contender, Magomed Ankalaev, and the #5 ranked contender, one-time title challenger, Anthony Smith has been added to a UFC 277 pay-per-view card on July 30. At the time of publication, an official location or venue for the showcase has yet to be determined by the organization.
17-1 as a professional, Ankalaev most recently featured in the main event of UFC Vegas 50 last month, defeating another one-time light heavyweight title chaser, Thiago Santos with a unanimous decision victory.
In the midst of a three-fight winning run, Anthony Smith, whom also headlined in his most recent Octagon outing, knocked back Ryan Spann with a technically sound and eventual first round rear-naked choke at UFC Vegas 37 last September. MMA Junkie reporters, Nolan King, and Mike Bohn were first to report the news of Ankalaev’s pairing with Smith.
Riding a stunning eight-fight winning run, Dagestan striker, Ankalaev’s sole professional and promotional loss came in the form of a buzzer-beating triangle choke loss to Paul Craig at UFC London back in March 2018 in his UFC debut.
In eight victories since, Ankalaev has defeated Marcin Prachino, Klidson Abreau, Dalcha Lungiambula, Ion Cutelaba twice, Nikita Krylov, Volkan Oezdemir, and the aforenoted, Santos.
Nebraska veteran, Anthony Smith, who unsuccessfully pried the light heavyweight title from former two-time division titleholder, Jon Jones back in March 2019, has since managed to land a 4-3 promotional run.
Anthony Smith is set for his whopping fifth-third professional walk on July 30.
Submitting Alexander Gustafsson, Smith would then drop a knockout defeat to current light heavyweight best, Glover Teixeira, before a unanimous decision setback against Aleksandar Rakic.
Before his above mentioned win against Spann, Smith, who plys his trade at Factory X under the tutelage of Marc Montoya stopped the duo of Devin Clark, and Jimmy Crute.
An official main event for the UFC 277 pay-per-view showcase on July 30. has yet to be determined by the organization at the time of publication.