UFC Fight Night 28: Glover Teixeira vs. Ryan Bader Head-to-Toe Breakdown
In only a matter of days, the UFC will cap off one of the busiest two weeks of the year.
From their initial debut on Fox Sports 1 to UFC 164, all of it culminates this Wednesday as the Fox network hosts its second installment.
Headlining the main card in Brazil is none other than light heavyweight contenders Glover Teixeira and Ryan Bader.
Both fighters are coming off impressive first-round submission victories in which they showed their promise as future top billings.
Here's how their matchup stacks up in the always entertaining UFC Fight Night head-to-toe breakdown.
Trained by former Chuck Liddell henchman John Hackleman, naturally Teixeira has to be good on his feet.
Through four fairly lopsided fights, the Brazilian has shown just that—beating and battering every opponent he's faced.
From crisp jabs to liver-bursting body shots, Teixeira seems to have his striking down pat.
There's a reason he carries 12 career knockouts.
Bader is certainly capable of throwing timely combos and staying in the pocket while avoiding damage, but his precision just isn't on the same level. Neither is his footwork.
Despite Teixeira's storied past of cleaning the Brazilian fight scene with his punching power, Bader is simply a different kind of animal.
Chalk it up to the fact that he leans on his knockout ability more than anything else, but Bader is always one punch away from laying someone out.
Teixeira has serious knockout power, but considering he was unable to put Fabio Maldonado and Rampage Jackson away, you have to wonder.
In any case, "Darth" throws with deadly intentions on more than half of his total strikes, while Teixeira is more of a patient and methodical striker.
Slight Advantage: Bader
As it stands right now, UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones is the only fighter to ever take down Bader more than once.
While that speaks levels to Bader's defensive capability to keep a fight standing in order to utilize his power, it also represents his offensive potential.
With a collegiate background unmatched by the majority of his peers, he's able to bring the fight to the mat when he deems it necessary.
Teixeira definitely has solid takedowns himself, including some useful sweeps, but nothing close to an NCAA Division I standout.
Bader's overall ability to bring the fight to the ground could prove to be a double-edged sword.
While he may want to secure takedowns to score points and escape Teixeira's crisp boxing, he has to keep in mind that his opponent is a second degree black belt.
Not only has Teixeira secured two submission victories through four UFC appearances, but Bader himself has been tapped two times in the past three years.
Bader could certainly gain top position and implement some deadly ground-and-pound, but why take a chance against one of the best grapplers in the division?
While Bader possesses the ability to challenge almost any top contender in his respective division, there's just something about Teixeira that stands out above all.
It could be his mysterious demeanor or his overall championship potential entering 2014. Either way, the Brazilian seems destined for optimal glory.
In just four fights, he's practically mangled some of the best gamers in the weight class, including a three-round contest with a very focused and free-agency bound Rampage Jackson.
Bottom line is that no matter where the fight goes—standing, in the clinch or on the ground—Teixeira always seems to know what his opponent's next move is.
That's a deadly type of intuition.
For anyone who has ever seen a professional mixed martial arts bout, they know that a fighter is always one punch away from victory.
Unfortunately for Bader, who's wrestling should be checked by Teixeira's jiu-jitsu, that's exactly what he'll be counting on come Wednesday night.
There's no saying for sure how this fight will play out, considering the animal-like tendencies Bader could manipulate. However, in his home country of Brazil, Teixeira will be on top of his game.
Look for him to take his time in the first round to avoid Bader's initial power dump, only to push the pace in the second and secure the finish.
Verdict: Teixeira by TKO in Round 2
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