Glover Teixera was all set to finally square off with Jimi Manuwa in a match up the British contender had been pursuing for years. Unfortunately for Manuwa, he now finds himself looking for a new dance partner for the UFC’s visit to Sao Paolo, Brazil next month.
Late last night, Ariel Helwani broke the news that Teixera was out of the UFC Sao Paolo main event as a result of an injury. Shortly after, Jim Edwards confirmed he had received reports of the veteran Brazilian picking up a shoulder injury which had forced him from the card.
Shortly after ESPN’s Helwani shared the news that Khalil Rountree (7-2-0) had offered to step in at short notice to face number five ranked Manuwa, short notice specialist Anthony Smith (30-13-0) threw his hat into the ring.
Smith does of course have his own booking to consider. The 30-year-old is set to face Swiss knockout artist Volkan Oezdemir (15-2-0) in the UFC Moncton main event on October 27th. With Smith’s last two appearances lasting a grand total of 2 minutes 22 seconds, he may well believe that he can swiftly dispatch Manuwa without taking any damage and still go on to face Oezdemir the following month.
Considering the UFC’s apparent desire to have a Brazilian in the main event, there would seem to be only one viable option to step in and face the heavy handed Londoner – Thiago Santos (18-6-0)
Santos has recently shown interest in stepping up to 205lbs and just last week earned a unanimous decision win over Kevin Holland at UFC 227. The 34-year-old has been on a tear at 185lbs with five wins in his last six appearances, his lone loss coming via a first round knockout courtesy of David Branch earlier this year.