UFC 153 Results: Is Glover Teixeira a Legitimate Threat to Jon Jones?

Joe Chacon@JoeChaconContributor IIIOctober 14, 2012

Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

All aboard!

That's the call many people around the MMA world are hearing as they board the Glover Teixeira hype train.

Teixeira absolutely dominated Fabio Maldonado at UFC 153 on Saturday night in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. With the win, Teixeira has now won 17 consecutive fights and puts himself in line to face a big name or top-10 contender. The reason I say "or" is because the early buzz around Teixeira is that he will fight Rampage Jackson in his next fight—somebody who many no longer consider to be a top-10 fighter in the 205 division.

That fight is not confirmed but rather highly speculated. Considering Teixeira was supposed to face Jackson on Saturday night, I can't imagine the fight surprising anybody should it be announced.

As Teixeira works his way up the division ladder, how long is it going to take before he reaches Jon Jones?

You can't tell by looking at him, but Teixeira is only 32 years old. While he's not a young pup, he's definitely not in the twilight of his career either. Perhaps it is a fair assessment to say he is in his prime. The man hasn't lost a fight since 2005.

Should Teixeira work his way through the division and should Jones continue his winning ways, does Teixeira pose a legitimate threat to the champ? It's hard to look at his previous performances and say he'd be in over his head. Not only does Teixeira win, he wins convincingly. 14 of his 19 wins have come within the first round.

Teixeira has shown he can be successful trading punches, and the amount of damage he inflicts upon his opponent while on the ground is even more impressive. He exerts such a great combination of speed and power when delivering elbows. In fact, it is reminiscent of Jon Jones.

There are two great unknowns when it comes to handicapping Teixeira's chances against Jones. For one, we don't know how Teixeira is going to fare against upper-echelon opponents. We know his track record up to this point, and while it has been very impressive, how do those opponents stack up to who he will face in the coming months?

Secondly, I was pretty alarmed to see how careless Teixeira got towards the end of the first round in his fight with Maldonado. He had Maldonado rocked so badly he could barely stand, yet he was almost dropped by a left handed-punch because his hands were hanging low. That seems to be something consistent with people who come out of John Hackleman's camp. Chuck Liddell held his hands low, Court McGee doesn't protect his head, and now I'm seeing the same thing with Teixeira.

Other than the hands hanging low, I'm thoroughly impressed with Teixeira, and I think he can pose as much of a threat to Jones as any of the contenders in the division. Unfortunately for Teixeira and the rest of the fighters, Jones is only 25 years old and is going to become an even better fighter than he is today.


Joe Chacon is a featured columnist for Bleacher Report and a staff writer for Operation Sports. You can follow him on Twitter @JoeChacon.