The light heavyweight title scene is rocking for the first time in years following UFC Vegas 13.
After a stunning performance, Glover Teixeira defeated Thiago Santos via submission in the third round despite being knocked down twice by huge strikes from ‘Marreta’.
After being knocked down in the first round, Teixeira managed to take Santos down to the ground and completely dominate from top position before more of the same in the second round led to a potential 10-8 round.
In the third round, Santos dropped Teixeira again and when looking for the finish managed to gas himself out. Glover took over, got the takedown again and choked Santos out quickly for the big win.
At 41 years old, his career hasn’t got much longer to go but he is now currently involved in his second five-fight winning streak since joining the UFC. His first led to a title shot against Jon Jones, where he was beaten by the champ via a unanimous decision back in 2014.
This time, it looks as though he could miss out on an immediate title shot because the UFC is looking to book a super fight between Jan Blachowicz and middleweight champion Israel Adesanya.
While a fight between Adesanya and Blachowicz would be quite the spectacle, it’s not a super fight that we really need right now.
At middleweight, Adesanya has contenders he could face. Robert Whittaker’s wins over Darren Till and Jared Cannonier have got him back to the front of the line with the UFC interested in making that bout happen too. While Adesanya may not like it having beaten Whittaker convincingly already, he shouldn’t be able to pick and choose his opponents anyway.
The UFC should make Adesanya wait to move up and defend against the No.1 contender, while Blachowicz has already revealed he is open to fighting Glover as the No.1 contender too.
If the organisation want to implement a rankings system, they should honour it. Neither division has been cleaned out and there are obvious contenders available to fight on schedule, so make it happen.
Elsewhere on the card, Raoni Barcelos staked his claim for a ranked opponent in the stacked bantamweight division. A fight of the night performance saw Barcelos defeat Khalid Taha, taking his record to 16-1 and 5-0 in the UFC.
He showed a tremendous skillset in the fight, landing several solid strikes and showing true skill on the feet while also showing great submission skills during his short period on the mat.
With Marlon ‘Chito’ Vera ranked at No.15 in the division, it shows just how stacked it is with quality fighters. A fight against Barcelos could be a fantastic introduction for the Brazilian to the top of the division.
At 33 years old, Barcelos had a year out of the octagon following an injury but he is back now and seems to be at the peak of his powers. Watch out for a big 2021 for him coming up as the bantamweight division starts to shape up.