3 Questions We Have About Glover Teixeira Ahead of UFC 160
UFC 160 is now just a few days away and features plenty of exciting fights (on paper). In addition to Cain Velasquez versus Antonio Silva and Junior Dos Santos taking on Mark Hunt, we will be treated to a potential brawl between Glover Teixeira and James Te Huna.
Teixeira is in the midst of an 18-fight winning streak and is 3-0 within the UFC. Yet, with 22 professional fights on his record, there are still plenty of questions we have about him.
As Teixeira continues his climb the ladder toward a title shot, let's take a look at the three most pressing questions we have as he heads into his fight on Saturday night in Las Vegas.
1. Will Teixeira Look Past Te Huna?
It happens in sports all the time. A team, or in this case an individual, sees a greater challenge ahead. Perhaps it's a shot at the No. 1 team in the country, or maybe a chance to get within reach of a title shot.
Prior to Teixeira and Te Huna being booked, there were rumblings of Teixeira getting a "big name" to fight, somebody who would propel him to the cusp of a title fight. Ryan Bader was the name he was given, and although it doesn't sound exciting, it was still a solid opponent.
Bader was forced to withdraw due to an injury, and thus Te Huna is the man Teixeira will face. For fans, it may lead to a more exciting fight as Bader would have no doubt tried to get Teixeira on the ground. This now has the makings of a slugfest, although I wouldn't be surprised to see Teixeira showcase his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu skills.
Teixeira needs to focus on Te Huna and not worry about what could be on the horizon. Failure to do that may lead to a knockout blow by way of Te Huna's fist.
2. Can Teixeira's Chin Sustain Te Huna's Accuracy?
James Te Huna spends most of his time on his feet, but he also lands a healthy percentage of significant strikes.
In Te Huna's last three fights, he has landed 193 of 361 significant strikes. That's good for 53 percent, and a big reason why Te Huna has won 10 of his last 11 fights.
Teixeira can take a punch, there's no question about that, but sooner or later everyone gets caught. Teixeira will need to not only be able to withstand a large quantity of shots from Te Huna, but also be able to keep his head moving to avoid getting into trouble.
Te Huna hasn't had a submission victory in nearly a decade, so his game plan would appear to be clear. It's going to be up to Teixeira to circle in the right direction and counter when given the opportunity.
3. Will Teixeira Try to Win This Fight on the Ground?
Teixeira does have a strong BJJ background and maintains 100 percent (8-of-8) efficiency in his takedowns so far with the UFC. He managed to take Rampage Jackson down five times in his last fight, and one has to wonder if he will pull a "Brendan Schaub" and get a hyped slugfest onto the ground.
Te Huna doesn't usually get paired up against somebody with a good ground game and may not fare very well should Teixeira implement his BJJ as a focal point of his strategy.
We know Teixeira can trade punches with Te Huna, but taking the fight to the ground may sway the odds into his favor even more than they already are.