A different story altogether is unfolding this Saturday at UFC 202, one that deserves our attention. We all know that Conor McGregor is fighting Nate Diaz in a huge rematch, but one fight has been massively overlooked on the event, one which has high stakes involved. Anthony Johnson is fighting Glover Teixeira in the co-main event of the evening. Yet we have seen hardly any promotion apart from a few minutes of vignettes on YouTube. This fight however has much larger implications than the main event. The winner gets a shot at Daniel Cormier for the Light Heavyweight Title.
This fight is going to be something special, two heavy hitting men pitted against each other, its the kind of fight that could be a main event in itself, if not for the draw of McGregor/DIaz on the same card. I believe for certain we are either going to see performance of the night or fight of the night from this bout. Teixeira is 8-2 in the UFC and Johnson is 5-1 at Light Heavyweight in the UFC in a division filled with huge talent and dangerous fighters. Each one of those losses for each fighter was in a fight for the title.
Anthony Johnson is the former Welterweight now fighting at Light Heavyweight and if anything he is more dangerous than he was at Welterweight. He hits so hard it would make you turn to Jesus after one, just in case you are about to meet your maker. He may not be the most technical fighter out there, but you just cannot teach that power. Not to mention he is an all out phenomenal athlete, whatever sport this guy would set his mind to, he would succeed in. In his six UFC fights since his return he has lost solely to Daniel Cormier, in a fight in which he rocked Cormier early on. Johnson seemed to gas in later rounds and subsequently lost via submission in the third round. In his other five fights he has knocked out 4 of his opponents (including former title contender Alexander Gustafsson) and I mean KNOCKED OUT. Cold. He is a violent and athletic beast who can never be taken lightly, or you are done.
Glover Teixeira is also a devastating striker, a very good boxer who has TKO wins over four of his ten UFC opponents. What is different to Johnson however is that while he may not be the best athlete, his striking is top level, he’s tough and durable, but not only that he is a legitimate BJJ black belt, having three submission victories during his UFC tenure. If he can get Johnson to the floor, I don’t see him being able to compete. Teixeira also has only lost to top competition, in two decisions, one too potential GOAT Jon Jones and incredible wrestler Phil Davis.
Both of these guys are legitimate finishers, tough, durable and exciting to watch. Not only that but now it is for the opportunity to try and get what they haven’t had yet. A Championship. For me there are five fighters that make this division a great one to watch Jon Jones (before all the drugs shame), Daniel Cormier, Alexander Gustafsson and these two. Great fighters need other great fighters to have a legacy, and we could be seeing a classic on saturday, not that the UFC would let you know. So while you’re there getting pumped over silly press conference antics, remember there is a legitimate fight mixed in with the circus. Don’t blink, it could be over in a second.