Glover Teixeira is one of the prospects the UFC had its eye on for an incredibly long time, but hurdle after hurdle got in the way of his signing with the world's largest promotion.
After actually starting out with the first nine fights of his career taking place in America, the John Hackleman and Marco Ruas-trained fighter had trouble securing a visa to return to the states and was forced to compete in Brazil and Australia where he racked up a 15 fight win streak. All but one of those victories were stoppages.
Once he finally signed with the UFC, he proved the hype was real with a dominant first round stoppage over veteran Kyle Kingsbury in which he hurt his colorful foe with strikes before finishing him via rear naked choke on the ground.
Teixeira spoke with Sherdog.com about his upcoming fight and had a few very interesting things to say:
On accepting the fight against Jackson:
"I knew more or less what would happen. They had offered me this fight and I accepted right away, as I accepted Shogun."
On what he expects from "Rampage:"
"I'm going out with him in the standup. I have to be smart and not stand still, move, fight the right fight. But, I'll work on the strategy with my coaches."
On reports that former champion Mauricio Rua turned down a fight against him, saying he'd rather be cut from the UFC than fight Teixeira:
"I don't think it's something from Shogun. He's not guilty. It should be something from the manager. Shogun has fought the best and wouldn't have any reason to deny a fight against me. Leave that alone."
On training in the United States for this fight:
"I'm living here in the U.S., in Danbury, Conn. I'm also in Las Vegas, and now I'm going to help Lyoto Machida in his camp to fight against Ryan Bader. My camp will be here. I just got a green card and I have to stay here in the country for six months. I was in Brazil for a long time; now, I have to stay here and comply with this rule."
And lastly, on returning to Brazil to compete in a UFC event:
"Wow, it's the best thing! I went to both UFCs in Rio and was very happy with what I saw, the crowd. Now, I imagine the crowd thrilled that way again, but this time for my fight. But I can't get too excited. You know how a fight is. You have to train and get ready."
It seems that Teixeira is not intimidated by anyone, considering the fact that he accepted bouts against both "Shogun" and "Rampage" for just his second fight in the UFC.
What do you make of his chances against Jackson, especially considering he'll have the Brazilian faithful supporting him?