JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – UFC president Dana White didn’t have any praise for Anthony Smith’s corner or referee Jason Herzog after the UFC on ESPN+ 29 main event.
After a solid first round from Smith (32-15 MMA, 8-5 UFC), the fight took a big turn for Teixeira (31-7 MMA, 14-5 UFC) in the second when he dropped and nearly knocked out “Lionheart” with a massive shot. Herzog let it go on and Smith somehow survived the flurry and escaped the round, but what came after was only more rounds of damage until the fight was mercifully waved off in the final frame.
Herzog took some post-fight flack for allowing the drawn-out beating, and Smith’s cornermen from Factory X gym took heat, as well. UFC commentators Jon Anik, Daniel Cormier and Paul Felder leveled criticism to both parties on the broadcast, and White sided with them, too.
“I do (think we need more corner stoppages),” White told reporter, including MMA Junkie, post-fight at UFC on ESPN+ 29. “I didn’t think his corner was going to let him come out, but that’s between them and their corner. And the ref could’ve stopped that in the fourth, too.”
White has been cageside for countless fights in his tenure as UFC president. However, even he got a little uncomfortable watching the one-sided contest play out. And he wasn’t the only one.
“Us sitting on the outside it was a little tough to watch,” White said. “Cormier was flipping out. Like, flipping out.”