Soon we have the UFC Light Weight Championship coming up between Glover Teixeira and Jon Jones. Let me offer here humbly some sincere predictions.
Glover Teixeira is a smaller man than Jon Jones, stocky with a number of good skills. He is a good striker, hits well properly, keeps his hands up and moves well. His wrestling is excellent and BJJ is also great. All around he is a good fighter.
Jon Jones is a much bigger man and contrary to the myth perpetuated by the media Jones is not really incredibly skillful. Jones’s game is a good 80% attribute and 20% technique and I will quantify this statement. Jones is DAMN BIG for the light heavy weight division.
If you watch the fight of Jon Jones and Vitor Belfot you will see when Jones wants to shoot on Belfort he does not even need to step, he is so long and lanky that all he needs to do is level change. As soon as he bends his knees he was practically at Belforts feet. He just bends and he’s there. An athlete like George St. Pierre has to actually push and cover distance in order to shoot on people and that is impressive but Jones needs only to squat and he is there.
Again against Vitor Belfort Jones needed only to stretch out his long leg to hit him with a lead side kick and really had no fear of retaliation because he was so far away!! In Belforts Guard when Jones bends his arms his elbows were almost as long a Belforts whole arm. Plus his torso is so long that he can just sit there in the guard and reach the head of Belfort with his elbows again without having any real threat of retaliation. It is almost cheating.
Jones is BIG, big and LONG, it is not that he is so great, he is just so big. That is why when you saw Jones finally fight someone his own size in Alexander Gustafsson, Jones really go his ass kicked. Jones could not take down Gustaffson at all in the beginning of the fight despite being a much more seasoned wrestler. In fact Alexander became the first to take down Jones 3 TIMES IN ONE FIGHT, not to mention out strike Jones in every round, except perhaps the 4th which I slightly gave to Jones.
At the end of the Gustafsson fight Alexander had very little marks on this face but Jones looked like he had been in a car accident and hit the windshield with his face. Jones certainly made some good attempts with his kicks, punches and favorite spinning back elbow, but none of them had the effect that they had on much smaller men.
I have said before and I will say it again jones fighting in the light heavyweight division is really a cheat and not at all a measure of his talent but in fact a measure of his size. He is just like Brock Lesnar when he fought smaller people in the beginning. UFC Please we are not fooled, start putting Jones in the Heavy Weight divison and let us see him fight Cain Velasquez, then that will be a true telling of his skill level in different areas,
All that being said for Glover Teixeira I see the same problems existing that Vitor Belfort had. Jones is much bigger and longer than him. From a striking stand point Jones will be able to kick him with his much longer legs from a much further distance.
IF Teixeira reacts with typical kick boxing technology and simply backs up to avoid the strikes, well he is eventually going to hit the cage and Jones is going to keep nailing him without Teixeira being able to effectively retaliate. HOWEVER if Teixeira can react to Jones with more of a Dumpag technology to use what we call an angular footwork against Jones’s linear attacks, well then Teixeira could react to advance 45 degrees past Jones’s kick as he is extended and then catch Jones before he can move back.
This is something we do very well at Dauntless against larger and longer strikers but it definitely is a unique Filipino skill and I just do not think that Teizeira knows it. So what does that leave him to do?
Well if Glover is left only with linear kickboxing technology he could do 1 of 3 things. He could get hit, he could back up to avoid initial blows and then get hit or he could try to advance before Jones throws his strike. If Glover does the 3rd option he could come in an hit Jones IF Jones does NOT react and move back. Well that is a big IF, Jones may read this intent and simply move back as Glover tries to move in. In this scenario Jones’s size and length give him a big almost advantage.
Truly the only way to beat Jon Jones on striking is to be good at Dumpag and make him think that he has a target to hit, then when he moves to strike you must sharply execute our 45degree footwork which will make him miss and also allow you to close in and strike him while he is still extended thinking he was going to hit you. That repeated over and over with strategic strikes to Jones’s limbs before you hit the head or body will deliver better results.
Trying to close in on Jones from a distance with him watching you and having the ability to react and move back is going to be tenuous at best, unless you are the same size as him as we saw with Alexander Gustafsson.
Bottom line if you have a smaller man with shorter arms trying to hit a much bigger man with longer arms who is standing further away where he can hit you and you cannot hit him back, well it is going to come down to a very specific timing, slipping and footwork. You are not going to be able to just advance without him moving back. You are going to have to advance when he is advancing WITHOUT getting hit and then strike him before he moves back. That is what we do well in Dumpag.
From a wrestling point of view we saw Jones come in against Chael Sonnen and with his big long arms simply wrap Sonnen around the legs. It looked like a man grabbing a child, I mean REALLY?Jones was just so much bigger and longer than Sonnen who is really a Middle Weight, If Sonnen was going to stop a man that much bigger he really needed something I call “Anti- Wrestling” or Counter Offensive Wrestling which again he did not appear to have. We saw Sonnen have the same problem with Rashad Evans who wrestled him against the wall, Sonnen only appears to be good with his wrestling offensively.
But we are talking about Jones and Teixeira, well again if Jones comes in and wraps Teixeira with those long arms it really is going to depend on Teixeira’s Anti-Wrestling skills. Can he keep his base against the shoot, manipulate the neck and destroy the shoot. With Jones long arms he is going to have to react quicker and spread his legs farther if Jones tries to wrap them.
If Jones tries to clinch him can he keep his base against the clinch double under, over under, double under, can he effectively counter all of these clinches and the energies that can be used from them. Can he counter the suplex and numerous other throws that are there. Is he prepared for this?
On the ground does Teixeira have a very tight guard where he can get close to Jones to counter the length of his torso and elbows. Can he get up tight, wrap his arms and really tie him up to nullify Jones and keep him tied up until the ref will restart or can he work a submission on Jones without getting hit? Difficult again because of Jones’s extreme size.
I recommend if he is in the guard that he immediately get tight and really wrap the arms in such a way that he can work other submissions that Jones may not be used to. Or tie him up and heal kick Jone’s siatic nerve. Definitely Jones is going to want to sit up in Teixeira’s Guard and try to use his size advantage to hit him with his long arms, because it is easy for him. It does not require any real skill or effort. Jones is big and long, so If he is in the Guard he is going to try and hit him there with elbows.
A good rule of thumb for this fight if Teixeira is in the guard would be to immediately wrap his legs very high around Jones’s torso and then wrap his arms around Jones’s neck and pull him down tight to his chest exercising as much stress on Jones’s neck as possible to keep himself chest to chest and heavy on Jones. If jones then makes the mistake of putting his hands on the ground to try and push himself up there are options.
Teixeira could also put an old BJJ hold on him from here where he wraps one arm over the neck like he is going for a guillotine but then go under the armpit of the far arm to come over with your other arm and secure the hold there. This can be a submission itself on the neck crank and also lead into other submissions from there. This is an older game that most people do not do today but it is very, very good. I hope Teixeira knows it.
So if Teixeira is going to beat Jon Jones well he is going to have to:
#1 – Advance on Jones when Jones is trying to advance on him without getting hit and hit Jones instead with significant power and then repeat the process.
#2 – Counter effectively all of Jones’s shoots and clinches to either hit Jones well with compression strikes while he is holding him, take him down or break off from the clinch and create space enough to hit free.
#3 – Counter all takedowns but if he goes down employ a different kind of guard that is much closer and tighter with the legs higher up Jones’s torso and the arms tightly around Jones’s neck to work a different game.
#4 – Watch The Mix!! Teixeira will have to do the right thing at the right time for each thing Jones is doing at the moment he does it. He is going to have to be sensitive of Jones’ attacks if they are striking, shooting or clinching from the beginner and keep reacting right throughout the fight.
Teixeira is smaller than Jones so his skills are going to have to be far greater. Jones on the other hand does not have to work very hard when he is fighting smaller people he can get away with using his size to off set.
It will be interesting to see and I really hope that Teixeira has better footwork than simply going backward, forward and side to side at 90 degrees. I hope he has learned the advancing 45 degree footwork that we do. If not Glover and you loose for this reason I hope you see this blog and call me up afterwards, but all my best to you and I truly hope you win.
But this fight is going to be SKILL versus ATTRIBUTES and the Skill is going to have to have the appropriate answers for the Attribute.
– Allen J. Sachetti