Teixeira will have the chance to become the second oldest champion in UFC history when he faces Blachowicz at the promotion’s non-pay-per-view numbered event on October 30. Following UFC Fight Night 194 in 2018, where the Brazilian’s defeat to Corey Anderson marked his third setback in just five outings, not many would have given Teixeira a chance at climbing back into title contention.
At the age of 41, Teixeira finds himself ranked #1 at 205 pounds and just over a week away from his second championship opportunity. The veteran secured a clash with the current light heavyweight kingpin after building an impressive five-fight win streak, which includes wins over Ion Cuțelaba, Nikita Krylov, Anthony Smith, and Thiago Santos. His destructive and brutal performance against “Lionheart” put the division on notice, but it was his submission of “Marreta” last November that secured a meeting with Blachowicz.
Despite his form, Teixeira is understandably heading to Abu Dhabi as the underdog. After all, Blachowicz is riding a five-fight win streak of his own, one that includes wins against former UFC Middleweight Champion Luke Rockhold, legendary Brazilian Ronaldo Souza, Corey Anderson, Dominick Reyes, and current 185-pound king Israel Adesanya. While many still underestimated the Polish behemoth heading into 2021, handing “The Last Stylebender” his first setback certainly changed that.
Nevertheless, Randy Couture, the UFC’s only post-40 champion, believes Teixeira can’t be counted out at UFC 267. Not only is ‘The Natural’ the only man to win gold in his forties, but he did it three times, at UFC 44, 49 and 68. The three-time UFC Heavyweight Champion and two-time 205-pound titleholder recently discussed Teixeira’s chances of achieving the rare feat later this month. In an interview with James Lynch, the 58-year-old backed the challenger to perform well on October 30.
“I don’t think you ever count an old dog like Glover Teixeira out. You know, we all have a lot of ups and downs… He’s certainly had his ups and his downs, and I think you’re seeing him back on the upswing. He’s got a lot of fight left in his body and in his heart. So, I think he’s gonna do well.”
Having not fought at heavyweight since a 2002 championship defeat against Ricco Rodriguez, Couture returned to the weight class at UFC 268 in 2007. At the age of 43, the Washington-born legend challenged Tim Sylvia for the belt. After five rounds, Couture secured his third heavyweight title triumph via unanimous decision.
Teixeira will be hoping to display a similar level of longevity by having UFC gold wrapped around his waist for the first time at UFC 267. According to the champ, the Brazilian will be KO’d into retirement in Abu Dhabi.
Do you think Glover Teixeira will become the UFC’s second post-40 champion at UFC 267?