GLOVER TEIXEIRA shocked the world at UFC 267 by claiming the light-heavyweight title and becoming the oldest first-time champion in the promotion’s history.
The Brazilian bruiser – who first challenged for the belt seven years ago – submitted Poland’s Jan Blachowicz in the second round of their Abu Dhabi showdown.
Teixeira’s sensational upset of Blachowicz saw him claim the light-heavyweight throne at the ripe old age of 42.
In his post-fight interview, he said: “20 years, baby. You know, I have no words to describe it.”
“And I’m breaking the rules, 42 years old. And I’m gonna keep breaking those rules.”
A calm and relaxed Blachowicz opened up with several low leg kicks and looked content to operate at range in the first round.
But with less than two minutes gone, he found himself on his back following a beautiful high-crotch takedown from his fellow veteran.
JOIN SUN VEGAS: GET A FREE £10 BONUS WITH 100s OF GAMES TO PLAY AND NO DEPOSIT REQUIRED (Ts&Cs apply)
Texeira quickly went to work inside the guard, dropping short, sharp shots on the grounded champion.
A series of nasty elbows gave Blachowicz some serious food for thought in the final minute and early in the second round.
Blachowicz’s corner called for him to keep his back off the fence during the interval, and he did just that after an early takedown attempt from the challenger.
A beautiful three-punch combo, which he followed up with a textbook slip left-hand counter, were apparent indicators the Pole had found his rhythm.
And a renewed sense of confidence led him to stuff two takedown attempts from the Brazilian.
He soon, however, found himself on wobbly knees after eating a nasty left hook in a heavy exchange.
Texeira’s third takedown attempt of the round proved to be the charm as he quickly grounded the champ.
And to the surprise of those in attendance at the Etihad Arena, he quickly took Blachowicz’s back and sunk in a nasty rear-naked choke.
A badly hurt Blachowicz quickly tapped to the choke and subsequently ushered in the Teixeira era of the light-heavyweight division.
An emotional Teixeira told fans: “Never give up on your dreams.
“No matter what people say, don’t listen to them. They’re going to put you down.
“Don’t listen to those negative people. Believe in yourself and keep going forward.”
A crestfallen Blachowicz, 38, has vowed to bounce back from his first defeat in over two years.
He said: “Everything was wrong with me. I think I left the legendary Polish power in the hotel room. That’s what happened.
“But you know, this is not the end of the story. This book is closed. I’m not a quitter, I’m not going anywhere.
“I will come back, for sure, again.”
In the co-main event of the evening, former men’s bantamweight champ Petr Yan claimed the interim title with a unanimous decision victory over Corey Sanhagen in a 135lb classic.
The Russian, who lost the belt to Aljamain Sterling via disqualification in March, said: “Everyone knows I am the real champion.
“I am ready to fight anyone. It’s either going to be [T.J.] Dillashaw or that clown Sterling.”
UFC 267 results
Glover Teixeira def. Jan Blachowicz (c) via second-round submission (rear-naked choke)
Petr Yan (ic) def. Cory Sandhagen via unanimous decision (49-46, 49-46, 49-46)
Islam Makhachev def. Dan Hooker via first-round submission (kimura)
Alexander Volkov def. Marcin Tybura via decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Magomed Ankalaev def. Volkan Oezdemir via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Amanda Ribas def. Virna Jandiroba via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Zubaira Tukhugov def. Ricardo Ramos via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Albert Duraev def. Roman Kopylov via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-27, 29-27)
Elizeu Zaleski Dos Santos def. Benoit Saint-Denis via unanimous decision (29-26, 29-26, 29-26)
Michal Oleksiejczuk def. Shamil Gamzatov via first-round TKO (punches)
Andre Petroski def. Yaozong Hu via third-round submission (arm-triangle choke)
Tagir Ulanbekhov def. Allan Nascimento via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
FREE BETS: GET OVER £2,000 IN NEW CUSTOMER DEALS