The UFC is rounding out their May 25th card (UFC 160) by announcing several matches in support of the main event featuring Cain Velasquez‘ defending the UFC Heavyweight title against Antonio Silva. One of the matches sure to garner interest is a Light Heavyweight bout between contenders Ryan Bader and Glover Teixeira. Teixeira is riding an impressive 18 fight wining streak, while Bader has gone 3-3 in his last six fights as he has been unable to score a signature win to propel him higher in the rankings. Let’s look at the matchup.
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Both men recently defeated former champion Quinton Jackson by Decision, however because of Jackson’s ups and downs, it is hard to read too much into the win. Bader also lost by fast guillotine choke to Tito Ortiz a little over a year ago, and in his last outing he won by fast rear naked choke against Vladimir Matyushenkyo. Bader has worked on his game if he went from being finished by a move to using that move to finish.
Teixeira has impressed in his outings, as he is a high volume striker who hits very hard and keeps coming. His cardio late in fights at times becomes an issue because of his high volume of output. His reputation went up last year when several bigger names refused to fight him, but Bader represents a different type of style than he has faced in the past, so this match is certainly a test for Teixeira.
Teixeira should come in the favorite for this fight when the lines hit the sportsbooks. Though he hasn’t faced a real wrestler yet in the UFC, Teixeira is going to make Bader work for the takedowns. He must make Bader work and have Bader run out of gas before he does, so he must successfully defend early takedowns in the fight.
At some point, Bader is going to be a big enough underdog that taking a flier on the wrstler in this bout becomes worth it.
Bader should want to avoid a stand up fight and he needs the takedown early. If it turns into a boxing match, it is going to turn into Teixeira stalking Bader, or Bader being aggressive and sloppy. Both of those scenarios are bad for Bader.