clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Philipe Lins wants to fight Anthony Smith next and show him ‘it’s time to hang up the gloves’

UFC Fight Night: Saint Preux v Lins
Philipe Lins
Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Unbeaten since cutting back down to his original weight class in 2022, Brazilian light heavyweight Philipe Lins wants to send Anthony Smith into retirement.

The 2018 PFL heavyweight champion came up short in his first two UFC bouts at heavyweight against Andrei Arlovski and Tanner Boser, but recently rebounded with back-to-back victories over Marcin Prachnio and Ovince Saint Preux. He demolished the latter in just 49 seconds earlier this year.

Lins will face Maxim Grishin in the preliminary portion of Saturday’s UFC Vegas 74 at the UFC APEX, and has his post-fight callout ready in case of an emphatic victory.

“There’s a good ranked fighter who fought recently, Anthony Smith, and I think I’m a good match-up for him,” Lins said on this week’s episode of MMA Fighting podcast Trocação Franca. “I think it’s a good fight. He’s very experienced, fought great fights and proved he’s very dangerous, so let’s go for it. If the UFC asks me [who I want] and wants to give me this fight next, let’s do it.”

Smith is 36-18 in the sport and once challenged Jon Jones for the UFC belt, but dropped his past two to Magomed Ankalaev and Johnny Walker. “Lionheart” said following his most recent defeat he’s “not going out like that,” so Lins wants to be his final fight.

“It’s time to hang up the gloves,” the Brazilian said with a laugh.

“There’s a lot of changes in the division and that opens space for those that aren’t ranked,” he added, referring to Jon Jones’ full-time move to heavyweight and Glover Teixeira’s retirement. “I believe that another good win will earn me a fight with a ranked guy. I’ve asked for rated opponents before but I feel that this fight with Maxim Grishin makes sense as well. I’m not a young athlete so I need to take big steps on way to my goals.”

Lins feels he carries no extra weight on his shoulders after securing a “much-needed” first knockout win under the UFC banner in February. Grishin, a Russian talent with 32 wins in 43 professional bouts, joined the UFC in 2020 after a nine-fight unbeaten run, going 2-2 so far inside the octagon.

“He’s done great fights and fought great opponents,” Lins said of Grishin. “I need to fight smart but at the same time do what I do best, which is be aggressive and go for it when I see an opportunity. My speed and jiu-jitsu will be my differential in this fight.

“Let’s see if I get another knockout, or maybe a submission. The important is that I go there and get my third straight victory in the organization. People like to watch exciting fights and people getting knocked out, so that motivates me because it’s my style.”

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the MMA Fighting Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your fighting news from MMA Fighting