After setback at UFC Vegas 37, what’s next for Ryan Spann?

This past Saturday at UFC Vegas 37, Ryan Spann (19-7) got his first crack at a main event with the promotion. He was taking on former title challenger Anthony “Lionheart” Smith (36-16) who has turned into a bit of a gatekeeper at 205.

It was a massive opportunity for Spann who was looking to break through into the UFC‘s top ten at light heavyweight. However, the fight didn’t go according to plan for Spann.

When the fight first started, Spann looked pretty good. He looked very active on the feet. You could tell that he does a great job of listening to his corner. Often giving them verbal feedback while competed while their shouting instructions.

Spann was able to land a takedown at UFC Vegas 37 and land a few shots, but overall, it was a very swift and sour night for Spann. During an early exchange, Spann was dropped and hurt by Lionheart.

Spann was eventually able to regain his composure, but that didn’t last long. He would get wobbled and hurt again by Smith which resulted in him ending up with Smith on his back. Smith locked up a choke and Spann tapped at UFC Vegas 37.

Spann’s UFC Run So Far

As mentioned, this was Spann’s first real taste at the top of the light heavyweight division. It didn’t go well at all. However, that just goes to show that he has a lot more growing he needs to do.

Spann just turned 30 and he’s shown off a ton of raw tools during his run in the UFC. Back in 2017, Spann was finished in 16 seconds on his first fight on The Contender Series. After that loss, he went back the drawing board and won eight fights in a row.

During that stretch, he got another shot on The Contender Series where he picked up a quick first round finish to earn a UFC contract. Upon reaching the promotion, he started 4-0 which included wins over Devin Clark and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira.

Since then, he’s just 1-2 in his last three with the two losses coming by first round stoppage. He also has a first round win over Misha Cirkunov during that stretch. This tells me that he’s a fringe top ten UFC light heavyweight, but still has to sharpen some things up before he’s ready for the top.

What’s next?

With that, what’s next for “Super” Ryan Spann? Well, there are a couple of options. If the UFC wants him to reset a bit, I like a matchup with Dustin Jacoby (15-5-1). Jacoby is 5-0-1 in his last six and he’s just outside the top fifteen. This would be a good measuring stick fight for both men.

If they want to keep Spann fighting ranked opponents, I would look at the Volkan Oezdemir (17-5) – Magomed Ankalaev (15-1) fight in October. Whoever loses that fight would be a good fight for Spann as the loser would be in a very similar spot as him.

After sensational performance at UFC Vegas 37, what’s next for Ion Cutelaba?

Ion Cutelaba

This past Saturday in the co-main event of UFC Vegas 37, we saw a light heavyweight showdown between Ion Cutelaba (16-6-1, 1 NC) and Devin Clark (12-6). Both of these light heavyweight contenders were looking to bounce back after recent losses.

Cutelaba was actually coming off of a draw heading into UFC Vegas 37. The last time we had seen Cutelaba prior to Saturday night was back in May when he fought to a draw with Dustin Jacoby.

That night, Cutelaba started out extremely fast and scored a 10-8 first round. However, he completely gassed and lost the final two rounds leading to the judges calling the fight a draw.

I was very worried about Cutelaba’s cardio heading into his fight with Devin Clark. In fact, the cardio issues are why I picked Clark to squeak by and get a decision win at UFC Vegas 37, however, I was dead wrong.

In the opening round, Cutelaba nearly finished Clark after dropping him with a big shot. The rest of the fight, Cutelaba continued pushing forward and taking Clark to the ground. In the end, Cutelaba won a lopsided decision win to get back on track.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 37?

This was a big win for Cutelaba as he hadn’t won a fight since September of 2019 in the UFC. He was finished twice by Magomed Ankalaev and then had the draw against Jacoby a few months ago.

He looked incredibly impressive on Saturday and he looked like the contender we thought he could be. The question now becomes, who should the UFC pair him with next after that victory?

Well, we have to remember that Cutelaba was in the top fifteen not too long ago. He looked like a top fifteen fighter on Saturday night. I think the UFC should look at top fifteen guys for “The Hulk’s” next fight.

A few guys to keep in mind are Paul Craig (15-4-1), Jimmy Crute (12-2), and Jamahal Hill (8-1, 1 NC). Hill and Crute are set to fight each other in December. Both are in the rankings and coming off losses. Whoever wins could be a good opponent for Cutelaba.

Craig is also around the same spot in the rankings and he needs a new opponent. He was originally supposed to fight Alexander Gustafsson next, but that fight fell through. A fight between Cutelaba and Craig would be interesting for the UFC fans who love grappling. This could be a potential matchup to watch out for.

After dominant win at UFC Vegas 37, what’s next for Anthony Smith?

Anthony Smith

This past Saturday in the main event of UFC Vegas 37, we saw a light heavyweight showdown between Anthony “Lionheart” Smith (36-16) and Ryan Spann (19-7). For Smith, he was trying to turn away another up and coming contender.

Lionheart was at the peak of the UFC‘s light heavyweight division entering 2020. However, two rough losses shuffled him back in the pack and there were a lot of questions regarding the desire of Smith to compete on the highest level.

The UFC decided to book him against some of the younger contenders to see where he was at. As a result, Smith went on a two-fight rampage where he stopped by Devin Clark and Jimmy Crute in the first round.

That said, the UFC decided to give Smith another tough rising contender this past Saturday in Ryan Spann. Once again, Smith answered the call in completely dominating fashion.

From the opening bell, Smith completely outclassed Ryan Spann. Lionheart dropped Spann multiple times before getting his back and submitting him in the first. It was the third straight first round finish for Lionheart in the UFC.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 37?

Make no mistake about it, Lionheart is back near the top of the UFC’s light heavyweight division after Saturday night. He did what the promotion asked in scaling back the competition to reset his career.

Out of this, Smith looks better than ever. His striking looks incredibly crisp and his ground game looks tremendous as he’s secured two submissions. After his win on Saturday, there was one light heavyweight that he called out.

That man is Aleksandar Rakic (14-2). Rakic is currently the UFC’s third ranked light heavyweight contender. Smith and Rakic fought last year with Rakic winning a dominant decision.

Now, you might ask why the UFC would rebook these two after Smith was dominated last year by Rakic? Well, they would for a couple of reasons. The first reason being that this looks like a completely different Lionheart.

Lionheart looks more motivated than ever and he looks more dangerous than ever. The second reason is that Rakic really failed to impress the UFC with his last performance. He defeated Thiago Santos, but nobody was excited about the fight or his victory.

With that, he lost a little steam. Rakic said on Twitter that he’s ready to go for a fight in December. Smith responded in the Octagon saying, “Merry Christmas to me.” This definitely looks like the direction the UFC should and will go next for Lionheart.

Anthony Smith submits Ryan Spann in the first at UFC Vegas 37

Anthony Smith

In the headliner of UFC Vegas 37, we saw a showdown in the light heavyweight division. Former title challenger Anthony “Lionheart” Smith (35-16) returned and took on rising contender Ryan Spann (19-6).

Smith was looking for his third straight UFC victory tomorrow night. It’s been a rollercoaster few years for Lionheart in the UFC. After first rising through the rankings, Smith hit tough times inside the octagon. Last year he lost two very tough fights to Glover Teixeira and Aleksandar Rakic.

After those losses, Smith’s back was against the wall and he’s won two straight since to get back on track. The last time we saw him was at UFC 261 when he stopped Jimmy Crute with a powerful leg kick.

Ryan Spann earned himself a UFC contract on The Contender Series and since then, he’s been sensational. Overall with the promotion, he’s 5-1 with the lone loss coming to Johnny Walker. If Spann can pickup the win tomorrow night, he will have shown everyone that he’s ready for the best in the division.

UFC Vegas 37 Recap

Round 1

The UFC Vegas 37 main event kicked off with a touch of the gloves. Smith took the center to start and landed a nice calf kick. Nice front kick to the body lands for Spann. Another low kick lands for Smith and Smith lands a right hand.

Spann gets a body lock and carries Smith over to his corner’s side of the cage. Smith is able to separate and the two have a big exchange. Spann gets dropped by Smith and Smith is all over him.

Spann is able to survive and he forces a scramble. He scrambles right into an armbar from Smith, but Smith can’t finish it. The two get back up to striking and Smith rocks Spann again with a big left hook.

Spann is extremely wobbly and he goes down again. Smith is all over him here and he takes the back of Spann. Spann gets flattened out by Smith and Smith locks in the rear naked choke and this one is over. Dominant performance by Lionheart.

Anthony Smith def. Ryan Spann by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) – Round 1

Ion Cutelaba dominates Devin Clark at UFC Vegas 37

Ion Cutelaba

In the co-main event of UFC Vegas 37, we saw a matchup in the light heavyweight division. The entertaining and unique Ion Cutelaba (15-6-1, 1 NC) was back as he was taking on “Brown Bear” Devin Clark (12-5).

Both men were looking to bounce back after their last performances. The last time we saw Clark was almost a year ago when he had his first UFC main event against Anthony Smith.

It was a tough test for Clark who had won two in a row, but hadn’t defeated anyone in the top ten. Smith would go on to submit Clark in the first round. That loss dropped Clark to 6-5 in the UFC.

Standing across from Clark at UFC Vegas 37 was Ion Cutelaba. Cutelaba came to the UFC with an impressive record of 10-1. However, it hasn’t been as smooth sailing for him inside the octagon.

Overall, Cutelaba is 4-5-1 in his ten fights inside the octagon. In his last fight, he started out dominating Dustin Jacoby, but completely gassed which caused him to lose the final two rounds and settle for a draw.

UFC Vegas 37 Recap

Round 1

The UFC Vegas 37 co-main event kicked off with immediate pressure from Clark. Both guys opened with a kick and Clark shot in for the first takedown. Clark got a brief takedown before Cutelaba popped right back up.

Clark pressed Cutelaba against the fence and started leaning on him with a lot of pressure. Cutelaba got a little separation and landed two good knees that led to a separation. Good low kick lands for Devin Clark.

Cutelaba holding the center but he’s not throwing much here as another low kick lands for Clark. Big left straight lands for Clark. Pressure from Cutelaba and he lands a really nice knee to the body.

Massive shot lands for Cutelaba and Clark goes down. Clark looks out, but he’s defending. Big shots from Cutelaba but Clark is hanging on. Cutelaba gets the back of Clark, but Clark is able to get back to his feet.

Good headkick after a brief separation lands for Cutelaba and he drags Clark back to the ground. Huge shots for Cutelaba and the ref gets close to stopping it, but the bell sounds. Huge first round for Cutelaba at UFC Vegas 37. Easily a 10-8 round.

Round 2

Entering the second round at UFC Vegas 37 and Clark is still looking a little out of it. That said, Clark is the one that pushes forward to start the second round. Huge overhand right just misses for Cutelaba.

Powerful low kick lands for Devin Clark. Nice right hand lands for Cutelaba. Clark still looks like he’s trying to get his footing after the damage he’s taken. Big shot from Cutelaba and he lands a takedown.

Immediately Cutelaba transitions into the full mount. Cutelaba postures up and starts landing some big elbows, Clark throws some shots back, but it’s all Cutelaba here. Clark tries to hip escape, but Cutelaba does a good job of holding the mount.

Cutelaba goes for a crucifix, but Clark uses the opportunity to buck and escape out the back and they’re back up. Clark throws some kicks which forces Cutelaba to shoot in for another takedown.

Cutelaba is able to get the takedown, but Clark immediately gets back to his feet. Another big round for Cutelaba, but this one is likely a 10-9 at UFC Vegas 37.

Round 3

Heading into the final round at UFC Vegas 37 and Clark is going to need a miracle. Clark immediately pushes forward and tries to get a takedown but Cutelaba stays up. On the separation, Clark lands a nice shot on Cutelaba.

Cutelaba then shoots for his own takedown and uses a nice trip to get Clark to the ground. Clark used the fence to get back to his feet. He then tried to use a trip to get Cutelaba down, but Cutelaba wasn’t going anywhere.

Cutelaba then shoots for his own takedown and gets Clark right back down. After landing some shots, Cutelaba is able to work his way to the mount. Big elbows land for Cutelaba from the mount.

Nice hip escape from Clark and Clark gets back up. Big right hand lands for Clark and Cutelaba shoots for a takedown. However, Clark uses a solid defense to actually get Cutelaba on to the ground.

Good shot lands for Clark from the top. The two separate and Clark throws everything he has and lands some good shots. However, nothing can finish Cutelaba off and this one is over. Great heart from Clark, but Cutelaba will get the nod at UFC Vegas 37.

Ion Cutelaba def. Devin Clark by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-26, 29-27)

UFC Vegas 37 Preview: Ion Cutelaba – Devin Clark

Ion Cutelaba

Tomorrow night in the co-main event of UFC Vegas 37, we have a fun matchup in the light heavyweight division. The entertaining and unique Ion Cutelaba (15-6-1, 1 NC) is back as he’s taking on “Brown Bear” Devin Clark (12-5).

Both men are going to be looking to bounce back after their last performances. The last time we saw Clark was almost a year ago when he had his first UFC main event against Anthony Smith.

It was a tough test for Clark who had won two in a row, but hadn’t defeated anyone in the top ten. Smith would go on to submit Clark in the first round. That loss dropped Clark to 6-5 in the UFC.

Standing across from Clark at UFC Vegas 37 will Ion Cutelaba. Cutelaba came to the UFC with an impressive record of 10-1. However, it hasn’t been as smooth sailing for him inside the octagon.

Overall, Cutelaba is 4-5-1 in his ten fights inside the octagon. In his last fight, he started out dominating Dustin Jacoby, but completely gassed which caused him to lose the final two rounds and settle for a draw.

UFC Vegas 37 Prediction

Like with any Cutelaba fight, I’m expecting him to start out very strong tomorrow. I’m very curious to see how the wrestling exchanges will go between these two men. When fresh, I like Cutelaba’s strength and explosions in the first round.

However, I’m terrified by his gas tank and that’s why I’m having a hard time seeing him winning at UFC Vegas 37. If all fights were just one five minute round, Cutelaba might be one of the better light heavyweights in the promotion.

However, the moment a fight goes into the second round, I’m worried about his cardio. For Devin Clark, this fight is going to be about surviving and draining the gas tank of Cutelaba. If Clark can make Cutelaba work in the first round, I really like him over the course of three.

I’m expecting big shots and takedown attempts from Cutelaba for the first half of the fight. However, I think Clark will start to take over and win some valuable points on the scorecards ultimately leading to a close decision victory at UFC Vegas 37.

Prediction: Devin Clark by Unanimous Decision

UFC Vegas 37 Preview: Anthony Smith – Ryan Spann

Anthony Smith

Tomorrow night in the headliner of UFC Vegas 37, we will see a showdown in the light heavyweight division. Former title challenger Anthony “Lionheart” Smith (35-16) is back as he’s taking on rising contender Ryan Spann (19-6).

Smith will be looking for his third straight UFC victory tomorrow night. It’s been a rollercoaster few years for Lionheart in the UFC. Back in June of 2018, Smith started a streak where he won three fights in a row.

That winning streak got him a fight with Jon Jones for the UFC title. He ultimately lost that fight, but bounced back big time with a win over Alexander Gustafsson. However, after that fight, he lost two in a row. That last lost coming against Aleksandar Rakic in a fight where he was completely dominated.

After that loss, Smith’s back was against the wall and he’s won two straight to get back on track. The last time we saw him was at UFC 261 when he stopped Jimmy Crute with a powerful leg kick.

Ryan Spann earned himself a UFC contract on The Contender Series and since then, he’s been sensational. Overall with the promotion, he’s 5-1 with the lone loss coming to Johnny Walker. If Spann can pickup the win tomorrow night, he will have shown everyone that he’s ready for the best in the division.

UFC Vegas 37 Prediction

There are going to be several key factors in this UFC main event. One of the key factors I’m going to be paying attention to is cardio. We’ve seen Ryan Spann have cardio issues in the past which could really hurt him.

This is a five-round fight and if Spann hasn’t drastically improved his cardio, he could be in trouble. While Spann has good power, I think he’s going to focus on trying to get this fight to the ground.

I do believe that he will be able to land some takedowns. That said, I don’t think he’s going to be able to finish Smith there. Lionheart is crafty and I expect him to get back to his feet in the middle rounds and control the stand up.

Ultimately, I’m banking on the lack of cardio in Spann for my UFC Vegas 37 prediction. I think by the later rounds, Smith is going to completely take over and I think we are going to see a late submission from Lionheart.

Prediction: Anthony “Lionheart” Smith by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) – Round 5