Glover Teixeira is built up as the first legit challenge for Jon Jones in a while (sorry Alex), but fans are starting to see past that hype and notice he has some slightly porous striking defence that has seen him nearly go out in past fights. Fabio Maldonado rang his bells good and proper during their fight, and Ryan Bader was obviously aiming to do the same in their fight. He almost pulled it off too, but Teixeira’s reflexive counterstrikes rescued him in his moment of danger and it was Bader who hit the canvas instead.
The result of the fight doesn’t change the fact that Teixeira recognizes he has a problem he needs to shore up. Here he is talking about it:
“I know exactly which strike hit me, it was a left punch. I suffered a knockdown and I knew he would come at me to try to finish the fight, but I was very well prepared and managed to connect where he was uncovered,” Teixeira says.
“It is hard to say, but I took a knockdown and wasn’t happy with my fight. But I want UFC belt and I will be back more focused, there won’t the kind of mistakes I committed here. This belt is going to be mine against Jon Jones or Alexander Gustafsson.
“I think I had an excess of confidence but this knockdown was like a wake-up call.”
The Maldonado incident should have been a wakeup, and what had Teixeira done during his tenure in the UFC to expect to be able to walk through Bader? His one fight against top competition before then was a lackluster performance against an over the hill and disinterested Quinton Jackson.
You can’t ignore his ability to knock a dude out, but I’ve found there are guys who just can’t bring that same skill to the tables when the competition raises too high. Is Teixeira one of these guys? We won’t get to find out before he faces off against Jon Jones because in today’s line em up title shot world, beating Ryan Bader is enough to lock you in as the next contender.