Coach Marc Montoya, Anthony Smith

Coach Marc Montoya answers criticism for not stopping Smith in UFC on ESPN+ 29 fight

Coach Marc Montoya is taking criticism in his own way.

Montoya received blame after cornering Anthony Smith in a fifth-round TKO loss to Glover Teixeira in the UFC on ESPN+29 main event on May 13. Smith took a beating, even handing his own teeth to referee Jason Herzog during the fight. 

Many thought Montoya and the corner should have stepped in and thrown the towel. Instead, Montoya backed his fighter, the same way he is standing by his decision now. 

“The bottom line is, if you’re going to continue to what I call ‘dare greatly,’ sometimes you are going to win and sometimes you are going to lose,” Montoya said on the Luke Thomas Show via Sirius Xm on Monday, June 1.

“Whether the criticism is fair or not, at the end of the day, all we can do from a situation on a win or a loss is get better.”

Taking the fall

Herzog and Smith both voiced their opinions on the matter after the bout.  Herzog took all the blame in an Instagram post two days after the fight. 

It wasn’t long till Smith criticized Herzog via Twitter.

“Coward move on his part, in my opinion,” Smith wrote on Twitter. “I make it a point before fights to know the commands, and what he expects out of each one before every fight.

“I did everything he asked and responded correctly per the pre-fight meeting. Don’t wilt under a little heat afterwards cause Twitter is mean. The world is soft. Man up.”

Smith told ESPN, “Before any of this ever happened, before anything, I took that option away a long time ago. If you want to sit in my corner, that’s my rule. You don’t stop the fight. Leave it in my hands. Don’t take it out of my hands. So, I’ve told them before, if you stop the fight, if you throw the towel in, you can go ahead and walk back to the locker room by yourself because I’ll never stand by you again.”


A little a month after the fight, Montoya is proud of the body of work from Anthony Smith, the coaching staff and himself.

While training under Montoya, Smith fought for the UFC Light-Heavyweight Championship. He lost by unanimous decision to champion Jon Jones at UFC 235 in March 2019. 

Smith is 4-2 in his last six bouts. A loss to Teixeira is a setback, but Montoya and his team have been here before. 

“That body of work since 2019 speaks volumes of what we’ve been able to accomplish, what we’ve learned and how we’ve been able to grow,” Montoya said. “A lot of factors in that fight. We try to control the controllable and unfortunately we weren’t successful in winning a fight like we have been.”

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