Glover
Teixeira
had an opportunity to fight for the light heavyweight
title at
UFC 282
even after Jiri
Prochazka
exited the card, but the Brazilian veteran ultimately
declined the alternative option.

Prochazka vacated the 205-pound belt after suffering a serious
shoulder injury that could sideline him for up to a year. Teixeira
revealed in an interview with
ESPN
that the UFC offered him a matchup against Magomed
Ankalaev
in place of the rematch with Prochazka. The
43-year-old opted against the fight because he felt like it was too
short of notice to prepare for a completely different opponent.

“I told them I needed more time for this guy, that he has a
different style,” Teixeira said. “The guy is a southpaw. I said,
‘What about fighting him in Brazil?’ They denied that and said they
needed someone to fight in Vegas. I said, ‘OK, I’ll fight Jan
[Blachowicz] in Vegas. If you’re going to throw me off, Jan has a
regular stance. Ankalaev is a totally different game. I need more
time.”

As a result, Ankalaev and Jan
Blachowicz
will now square off for the vacant light heavyweight
crown in the new UFC 282 main event. Teixeira believes he deserves
to be next in line to face the winner of that fight at a later
date.

“I think I’ll fight the winner of the two, because I’m still the
No. 1 contender,” Teixeira said. “But they can take anybody they
want. They can take someone not even ranked to fight for the title
because it’s their company. I don’t know what they’re going to do,
but I’m here. The plan is to fight the winner. I’ve earned
that.”

Regardless of how the title picture plays out in the future,
Teixeira says he made the decision that was best for him by
refusing to face Ankalaev.

“This could be my last chance to fight for the title,” Teixeira
said. “I want to win this belt. I’m training like a maniac. I am a
professional. Every time I show up, I put on a great fight. Win or
lose. I’m not going to go in there and just show up to fight a guy
because they say so. This is a dangerous game and I need to prepare
myself the best I can. My family is watching me. I have a lot of
students in the gym watching me. I need to be professional. So, I
am 100 percent behind the decision I made.”





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Glover Teixeira Explains Why He Declined New Opponent at UFC 282