Teixeira On Championship Hopes: ‘I’m Running After My Dreams’
It has been six long years since Glover Teixeira has received a shot at a major title. Losing to UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones at UFC 172, Teixeira has tried holding onto his spot. Now, he has an opportunity to redeem himself.
Teixeira (30-7) faces off against Anthony Smith today, May 13, from inside the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida. Main eventing UFC on ESPN+ 29, Teixeira is ready to earn himself another shot at the championship, regardless of who is holding it.
“This is a win I need,” Teixeira stated to MMA Junkie. “Beating Anthony Smith can put me within short striking distance of another title shot. I’ve been at this for a long time. I’ve corrected some of my errors. I’m ready to make another comeback. I never stop. Hopefully I’ll get another shot at the champion. It will probably still be Jon Jones. I still believe I can be the champion of my weight class. I’m running after my dreams.”
After losing to Jones via unanimous decision, Teixeira has gone 8-4. He is currently on a three-fight win streak, beating Karl Roberson and Ion Cutelaba via submission to start it. Teixeira’s last fight was a split decision win over Mikita Krylov back in September. At 40, Teixeira is ready to prove he still has a lot left in the tank.
He finally faces Smith (33-14), who recently earned a title shot against Jones. Following a three-fight win streak, Smith lost to the UFC Light Heavyweight Champion via unanimous decision in March 2019. His last fight was a submission-win over Alexander Gustafsson.
The two appeared to be on a collision course against one another previously before Teixeira lost to Corey Anderson on a fight night card that had Smith beating “Shogun” Rua. Now that they can finally meet, Teixeira is ready for the 31-year-old.
“After I racked up three wins, we had a talk and he said it’d be an honor to face me,” Teixeira went on to say. “It’s also an honor for me to fight this kid who’s beating everybody up. It motivates me to train hard and impose my game on fight night. I want do push him – drag him into deep waters.”
Here is the full card for UFC Jacksonville:
UFC Jacksonville Main card (9 p.m. ET, ESPN+)
Anthony Smith v. Glover Teixeira
Ovince Saint Preux v. Ben Rothwell
Alexander Hernandez v. Drew Dober
Karl Roberson v. Marvin Vettori
Ray Borg v. Ricky Simon
UFC Jacksonville Prelims (6 p.m. ET, ESPN+)
Andrei Arlovski v. Philipe Lins
Michael Johnson v. Thiago Moises
Sijara Eubanks v. Sarah Moras
Gabriel Benitez v. Omar Antonio Morales Ferrer
Hunter Azure v. Brian Kelleher
Chase Sherman v. Isaac Villanueva