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Anthony Smith believes Thiago Santos has a tough task ahead of him, but he won’t count “Marreta” out against Jon Jones.

Santos will challenge Jones for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) light heavyweight title on July 6. The bout is set to headline UFC 239 in Las Vegas. It’ll be Santos’ first UFC title opportunity.

Anthony Smith Sees Thiago Santos As Viable Contender

Smith has shared the Octagon with Santos and Jones. During an appearance on ESPN’s Ariel Helwani MMA Show, Smith said the following when asked whether or not he believes Santos has a chance against Jones:

“I do, I do. He’s fast, he’s explosive. I think you put Thiago Santos in there with an elephant he’s got a shot to put it down. The dude is just crazy explosive and he’s fast, there’s no windup. I just think that Jon is really good in the grappling and the wrestling exchanges and I think that clearly that’s one of Thiago’s holes. I just don’t think that there’s enough time for him to close that gap and Jon is too smart to not take advantage of that. So I think that it’s a tall task for Thiago, but he definitely has a chance that’s for sure.”

Smith is set to do battle this Saturday (June 1). He’ll go one-on-one with Alexander Gustafsson. The bout will headline UFC Stockholm inside the Ericsson Globe.

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