UFC 160: What We Learned from James Te Huna vs. Glover Teixeira

Steven RondinaFeatured ColumnistMay 25, 2013

May 25, 2013; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Glover Teixeira secures victory over James Te Huna during UFC 160 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The UFC has been pushing Glover Teixeira as the next great light heavyweight for a long while now and pushed a match between him and Quinton “Rampage” Jackson extremely hard. His fight with James Te-Huna was actually booked over the lightweight top contender's match.

While he was initially matched against Ryan Bader, he found himself in an easier fight against a lower-ranked opponent whom he matches up well against. In the end, Teixeira would get a guillotine choke in the first round.

So what did we learn?


Glover Teixeira Still Has Terrible Takedowns

Teixeira is very lucky Bader had to pull out of this fight. While he outgrappled both Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, and now, James Te-Huna, he has takedown attempts I can only describe as “casual.”

Not because he gets them effortlessly, mind you.  It's simply because he bends over, grabs a leg, then walks forward until the other guy falls down. It isn't explosive, it isn't fast and it wouldn't work against any top light heavyweights.

While he has deceptively good Brazilian jiu-jitsu, it's still doubtful that he would end up in a good enough position to threaten scary opponents. 

James Te-Huna has Worse Takedown Defense

So yeah, as bad as Glover's takedown defense is, Te-Huna still fell victim to it. That, really, is not very good.

Te-Huna was a dark horse to end up making a title run, given his solid winning streak coming into this fight. Those title aspirations, though, will not be realized if he doesn't improve considerably.

The light heavyweight division is largely dominated by wrestlers, with five of the fighters in the top 10 of the division coming from a wrestling background. If he was taken down and submitted by Glover Teixeira...it does not bode well for any championship hopes. 

Teixeira Still Hasn't Proven the Hype is Deserved

The jury's still out on Glover Teixeira. While he's now 4-0 in the UFC, his only win against a scary, established opponent was when he outlasted Jackson. Even in that fight, though, he did little more than stay a bit more active than the aged, somewhat indifferent Pride veteran. 

While he now has Te-Huna on his resume, that proves very little, especially when discussing his chances against any other top-five fighters. I'd favor most of the UFC's ranked light heavyweights over Teixeira at this point.


Te-Huna Still Isn't Done

I wasn't nice to Te-Huna here, but by no means are his fighting days over. He's still relatively young and has the tools and drive to stay relevant in the upper half of the light heavyweight division.

The UFC really wants Te-Huna to succeed, given their desire to expand into Oceania, and they are likely going to put him in a position to succeed. A few years from now, we could very well see him in the title picture.

He is an exciting fighter and is a treat to watch (in my opinion). We'll see how it goes.