UFC on ESPN+ 1: Aging Glover Teixeira knows he 'can't just bang it out' anymore

UFC on ESPN+ 1 will represent perhaps the last time Glover Teixeira steps in the octagon before turning 40. He said he’s still capable of competing at the highest level, but is aware that age brings limitations.

Teixeira (27-7 MMA, 10-5 UFC) only competed once in 2018, and that marked a unanimous decision loss to Corey Anderson at UFC Fight Night 134 in July. He pulled out of a scheduled bout with Jimi Manuwa at UFC Fight Night 137 in September due to a shoulder injury, and the recovery process has made the Brazilian realize he needs to be more cautious.

“We have to deal with certain situations in our careers,” Teixeira told MMAjunkie. “I was injured and couldn’t fight. I last fought with a slight problem in my shoulder. I underwent intense physical therapy. My shoulder is a lot better now, compared to when I fought Corey Anderson. That’s how it goes. We have to deal with small injuries that get worse as time goes by. It’s important to have the right strategy. I can’t commit to things or fight like I used to. I can’t just bang it out. I have to be more intelligent in training and in fighting.”

After going through the rehabilitation process and putting some thoughts into the state of his career, Teixeira said he’s coming into his next fight with his head on straight.

The former UFC title challenger meets Ion Cutelaba (14-3 MMA, 3-2 UFC) in a light heavyweight matchup on Jan. 19 at UFC on ESPN+ 1, which takes place at Barclays Center in Brooklyn and streamed on ESPN+ following televised prelims on ESPN.

Teixeira believes that he has a solid post-fighting life set up through his training academy and real estate investments. That’s not his focus now, though, because he said he’s still very focused on fighting and believes he still has plenty left to accomplish in the sport.

The road to his aspirations goes through Cutelaba, though, who is a hard-hitting knockout specialist. That’s exactly the type of opponent Teixeira enjoys facing, and so long as he competes intelligently, he said another victory should be on horizon.

“I’ll have the perfect strategy to beat him,” Teixeira said. “Between youth and experience, of course youth is better. But not in this fight. I think he’s a young guy who has a lot of learning ahead of him. I’ll beat him without a doubt. He’s not on our level yet, compared to the top five or top 10 in our weight class. Of course, he’ll have a lot of great accomplishments in his career – just not this time.”

For more on UFC on ESPN+ 1, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie

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