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Glover Teixeira promises a brawl with Corey Anderson at UFC Hamburg

Third-ranked UFC light heavyweight Glover Teixeira spoke about his opponent change at this Sunday’s UFC Hamburg.

MMA: UFC Fight Night-Winnipeg-Cirkunov vs Teixeira Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports

Glover Teixeira’s (27-6) chances of appearing at this Sunday’s UFC Fight Night: Shogun vs. Smith almost went down in flames two weeks ago when it was announced that his scheduled opponent Ilir Latifi had pulled out due to injury. However, the former light heavyweight title challenger’s spot in the co-main event was saved when former TUF winner Corey Anderson (10-4) stepped up on short notice.

The last time we saw Teixeira it was at last December’s UFC on FOX: Lawler vs. Dos Anjos in Winnipeg, Manitoba. At that event he met Misha Cirkunov, whom he defeated with a first round TKO. Teixeira had taken a risk in accepting a fight with a 205er lower ranked than he was, so he was delighted to get the win in impressive fashion.

“It was great,” said Teixiera to Bloody Elbow. “It was a great fight. Misha is a very tough opponent. And I think I was prepared for a three round fight, but I’m just so glad that I was able to finish the fight quick.”

The victory over Cirkunov came eight months after Teixeira lost to Alexander Gustafsson in the main event of UFC Stockholm. The veteran Brazilian lost that Fight of the Night, via a fifth round TKO.

When asked how important it was for him to bounce back with a victory, Teixeira answered that “It was very important,” before adding that it displayed that he was able to correct mistakes he made in the Gustafsson fight.

“I try to improve every time,” said Teixeira. “These young guys, they come out with different games, and when you are long enough in this game they try and capitalize on your mistakes. They’re watching you so you have to keep changing things up a bit. You have to keep improving.”

Teixeira’s victory ensured him a third-place spot in the UFC rankings, below only Gustafsson and Volkan Oezdemir (who fight at UFC 227 in August). Latifi is ranked fourth. Teixeira had seen a win over the Swedish-Albanian as his chance to get a title shot against UFC double-champion Daniel Cormier.

However, the change in opponents likely means the most he can hope for is a chance to hold onto his top five ranking. “When I first found out that Latifi was out, after I did all the camp, all the hard work these weeks, I thought it kind of sucks,” said Teixeira.

“To do all the work and think they might cancel the fight, it sucks. But then Corey comes out and takes the fight. So I have to appreciate him stepping in and saving my fight. So I have a lot of appreciation for him and I want to thank him and thank the UFC for making it happen.”

Teixeira expressed he was definitely disappointed to not be fighting Latifi, who he called “one of the top dogs” in the division. Though, he said, with Latifi pulling out so close to the event, he was willing to accept any opponent.

When evaluating Anderson as an opponent, versus Latifi, Teixeira said that the main differences were Anderson’s height, movement, and volume of strikes. However, though Anderson presents different challenges than Latifi would of, Teixeira said that doesn’t matter too much to him, since he wasn’t overly invested in preparing himself for Latifi’s style of fighting.

“I have this mentality that I have to be prepared for everything,” said Teixeira. “I have to train my wrestling, my jiu jitsu, my stand up, because I already have this mentality that if you’re a guy that studies your opponent so much, and if something like this happens, it throws you off guard. It really throws you off guard.”

“I think you have to prepare and be ready for everything and in the last couple of weeks, of course, we started watching a couple of tapes and we saw what the guy does, but that’s only in the last couple of weeks. That’s the final part of camp. You’ve got to be prepared for everything and be ready for the change because it’s not unexpected. It happens all the time in this sport. All the time.”

“This sport is brutal,” continued Teixeira. “This sport is a hard sport. You do get injuries in this sport. More than in other sports. I just hope Latifi will be OK and we’ll see him down the line.”

Even though Teixeira won’t be facing the opponent he had been promised when he signed up for UFC Hamburg, he’s confident that who he’ll meet in the cage will be ready and willing to put on a show with him.

“It’s going to be a brawl man,” predicted Teixeira. “We’re going to get in there and fight hard. You know me, I always push the fight. I always come to fight. I don’t back up. Everybody that knows my story. They know how I fight and sometimes I lose and sometimes I win. Most of the times I win and that’s the way I fight. And I fight to finish the fight, every time. Whether it’s three rounds, five rounds, every round I’ll be there trying to finish the fight.”

Glover Teixeira vs. Corey Anderson is the co-main event of UFC Fight Night: Shogun vs. Smith. The action begins in Hamburg, Germany at 2PM ET on Sunday, July 22nd. You can watch it live on FS1.

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