Fighting in your hometown in the main event with title shot implications may sound like a lot of pressure, but UFC light heavyweight contender Glover Teixeira views it as mere added motivation.
Teixteira takes on Ryan Bader in the UFC Fight Night 28 main event on Wednesday in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Leading up to the event, Bader has stated that all the pressure is on Teixeira, but that’s the way Teixeira likes it.
“I like it actually. It’s going to pump me up more so that I can fight better,” said Teixeira on Tuesday following the weigh-ins. “I feel great. I’m fighting in my hometown and I get to see all the fans cheering for me.”
UFC president Dana White has said that if Teixeira wins on Wednesday, he’ll likely be next in line for a title shot against the winner of the fight between champion Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson, who fight at UFC 165 on Sept. 21. On a 19-fight winning streak and undefeated in his four UFC appearances, the Brazilian is extra motivated by the title shot possibility.
“Of course I’m very excited when (Dana White) says that. I want to get the title shot and it motivates me a little more,” he said. “Bader is a good competitor. He’s been fighting Top 10 fighters for a long time, he’s The Ultimate Fighter champion and he’s a big name, so it feels good.”
We’ll see how Teixeira responds in his first headlining bout in the UFC and the added pressures on Wednesday. He enters the fight as a heavy betting lines favorite.