Anthony Smith: Glover Teixeira can’t afford to take damage against ‘dynamite striker’ Jamahal Hill

Anthony Smith: Glover Teixeira can’t afford to take damage against ‘dynamite striker’ Jamahal Hill

Anthony Smith doesn’t see Glover Teixeira being able to stand with Jamahal Hill.

Teixeira (33-8 MMA, 16-6 UFC) meets Hill (11-1 MMA, 5-1 UFC) for the vacant light heavyweight title in the UFC 283 headliner Jan. 21 at Jeunesse Arena in Rio de Janeiro. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on ABC and ESPN+.

Smith (36-17 MMA, 11-7 UFC), who originally was booked against Hill in the main event of UFC Fight Night 221 on March 11, will not only serve as a backup for the title fight, but he’s helping Hill prepare for Teixeira. Hill’s dangerous striking has put his past three opponents out and Smith thinks he’ll be too much for the 43-year-old Teixeira.

“Jamahal’s a dynamite f*cking striker and Glover is a little bit aging, is a little bit slower, and can’t afford to take the damage and speed anymore,” Smith told MMA Junkie. “I think we all know what that means. He’s made his money. His bread and butter in the later half of his career has been his ability to grapple and slow people down and push them up against the fence.”

Smith faced Teixeira in May 2020 and had a strong start, but Teixeira was rallied and inflicted plenty of damage on “Lionheart” before he got a stoppage in Round 5. Although Smith recognizes Teixeira’s hands, he thinks Hill will win if he keeps it on the feet.

“I don’t want to say it’s striker vs. grappler because Glover can strike – he’s got heavy hands,” Smith said. “I mean, he put me on my face one time. So I don’t think it’s that simple, but I think (if) Jamahal stays on his feet the whole time, I think we know how this fight ends.

“If he gets taken down and gets back to his feet, I think we know how this fight ends. I think it’s really just that basic. I think Glover has been very smart in the later part of his career. He’s done a better job of not taking damage, getting to his spots and controlling people, and Jamahal needs to not let that happen. I think it’s really that simple.”

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Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie