We have the next UFC light-heavyweight championship bout going down on October 30, 2021 at UFC 267 between champion Jan Blachowicz and No. 1 ranked contender Glover Teixeira.
We’ve all been waiting to hear of this booking since Blachowicz defeated UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya to make the first defense of his title back in March.
Let’s start off by what these two have done in their respective careers:
Teixeira came over to the UFC with a record of 17-2 back in 2012, not long after winning the Shooto South American 220 lb championship. After going 5-0 to start his UFC run, he’d lose to most peoples greatest of all-time, certainly the greatest light-heavyweight to ever live, Jon Jones, before dropping another decision to Phil Davis in his next bout.
Next came three-straight finishes, before going 3-3 in his next six, being viciously KO’d in two of those performances.
However, three years after that last defeat, to Corey Anderson, he’s won his last five-straight with four finishes.
The crazy thing about this is, he nearly got knocked out in four of those fights. He was so close to being finished in all of them, but was able to pull the finish out himself.
This win streak comes over the likes of Karl Roberson (arm-triangle choke), Ion Cutelaba (rear naked choke), Nikita Krylov (split decision), Anthony Smith (TKO), and Thiago Santos (rear naked choke).
As you see, he’s got victories over two champions, not world champions, but champions, and two wins over former UFC title challengers, just in his last five fights.
The champion on the other hand has had a similar, but also very different road. Where Teixeira found initial success in the UFC, Blachowicz did not.
Blachowicz came over to the UFC in 2014 with a record of 17-3, quite similar to his Brazilian challenger, as a three-time KSW light-heavyweight champion, as well as a three-time KSW light-heavyweight tournament winner.
Yes, those were different fights, and different accomplishments he achieved each time.
After finishing Ilir Latifi in his UFC debut via TKO in round one, something someone as skilled as Gegard Mousasi couldn’t do, he’d go 1-4 over his next five, making it 2-4 through his first six bouts with the promotion.
Blachowicz lost to Jimi Manuwa, Corey Anderson, Alexander Gustafsson, and Pat Cummins in this time.
Since then however, he’s gone 9-1, avenging two of those defeats, to Manuwa and Anderson. He did get TKO’d by Thiago Santos in that time, as he rushed in right when he shouldn’t have, but he clearly learned a lot from that mistake.
Since that mistake, Blachowicz has won five-straight over the likes of former Strikeforce & UFC middleweight champion Luke Rochold (KO), former Strikeforce middleweight champion Jacare Souza (SD), Corey Anderson (KO), Dominick Reyes (TKO), and now Israel Adesanya (UD), handing him his first MMA defeat.
It’s evident both of these men have had real career resurgences, and it’s been so special to see.
Jan Blachowicz is someone none of us ever expected to win the belt, especially at 37, now 38 years old.
Teixeira on the other hand, at nearly 42 years old, having lost most of his physique due to aging, he’s still beating the very best in the world, and finishing them. It’s been nothing short of astounding.
Who walks away from UFC 267 as the UFC light-heavyweight champion, Jan Blachowicz or Glover Teixeira?
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I became a fan of combat sports when I was 12 years old. I was scrolling through the channels and landed upon versus, where WEC was televised. Urijah Faber fought Jens Pulver for the second time that night. That’s the first fight I saw, and the fight that got me hooked on the sport. Since then, the sport has grown so rapidly, and my goal is to enlighten everyone on what’s going on in the sport today.