Coach Winkeljohn Praises Smith Ahead Of Jones Fight At UFC 235

Jon Jones may be a huge favourite going into his UFC light heavyweight title defence against Anthony Smith at UFC 235 but his coach Mike Winkeljohn is full of praise for ‘Lionheart’. As he told Luke Thomas on The MMA Hour Show, when he was asked about Smith’s attributes.

“Tough. Just big balls to keep going. He has the ability to come back, I think the scariest thing about him is just that. As you saw in his last fight with Volkan [Oezdemir], he was behind in my mind, but he knows how to survive and find the right time to do something. I think he started hurting him with body shots and then he had the takedown there at the end. I think it’s his ability, his mental toughness to survive and overcome that’s his greatest strength.

“[Smith]’s good at a lot of things. It’s his depth and his long range punches, the problem with that is that Jon’s even longer. He has the ability to throw punches at different times, his straight right hand is really, really effective especially in his counter mode against Jon. That’s what I’m worried about. And then he takes people down, there’s no doubt about it.

“I just think he’s going to have a hard night against Jon Jones, because I think Jon’s better everywhere. But I think his boxing skills are very tight. If I thought anything was going to be scary, it would be that. He’s definitely great everywhere, so we have to be on our toes, but he’s got to deal with Jon’s length and Jon’s ability to adapt.”

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