Currently ranked #3 in the world when it comes to UFC's Light Heavyweight division, a lot of eyes are on MMA star Anthony Smith. A professional fighter for over a decade, Smith has been exclusive to UFC since 2016. Back in June, he defeated Alexander Gustafsson at UFC Fight Night 153, not only winning the fight in a big way but also earning a "Performance Of The Night" bonus award from the company.
Anthony Smith has also found success as a commentator and coach. While still active in the ring, Smith is a part of the new grappling-based, team-oriented MMA promotion Kinektic, which debuted on the UFC FIGHT PASS network last week. Smith is one of Kinektic's four team coaches, like Chael Sonnen, Craig Jones, and Chris Lytle. Notably, Kinektic was co-founded by UFC Hall Of Famer Urijah Faber, Las Vegas entrepreneur Keith Veltre and award-winning sports announcer Sean Wheelock, while UFC favorite Paige VanZant is making her mark as one of its lead play-by-play commentator.
I had the pleasure of speaking with Anthony Smith by phone on the eve of Kinektic's kick-off August 16th event on UFC FIGHT PASS and highlights from that chat are below. Smith can be followed on Twitter via @LionheartASmith.
When did you find out that you were going to be involved with Kinektic?
Anthony Smith: It's been a while now. I believe I was one of the first coaches that's one of the first team captains that they reached out to. So from the very beginning -- I couldn't exactly tell you when that was though.
Is this your first experience that you have as a coach?
Anthony Smith: No, I mean I've always done a lot of coaching of other fighters, a lot of cornering and stuff like that.
So this is definitely not anything new for me.Is this your first time though coaching a team, per se?
Anthony Smith: Yes... I mean, I do a lot of coaching in between fights of my entire team that I'm a part of. But it's hard putting together an entire team and then sending them out to do something...
Darren Paltrowitz is a New York resident with over 20 years of entertainment industry experience. He began working around the music business as a teenager, interning for the manager of his then-favorite band Superdrag. In the years following, he has worked with a wide array of artists including OK Go, They Might Be Giants, Mike Viola, Tracy Bonham, Loudness, Rachael Yamagata, and Amanda Palmer.
Darren's writing has appeared in dozens of outlets including the New York Daily News, Inquisitr, The Daily Meal, The Hype Magazine, All Music Guide, Guitar World, TheStreet.com, Format Magazine, Businessweek, The Improper, Chicago Tribune, the L.A. Times, and the Jewish Journal.
Darren is also the host of the "Paltrocast With Darren Paltrowitz" podcast, as co-produced with PureGrainAudio. He is also the author of two published books, including 2018's "Pocket Change: Your Happy Money" (Book Web Publishing) and 2019's "Good Advice From Professional Wrestling" (6623 Press).