Jamahal Hill slowly walked towards his corner and in a moment the realization hit him: he had just become the UFC champion.
Hill defeated Glover Teixeira via unanimous decision (50-44, 50-44, 50-44) in the main event of UFC 283 on Saturday night in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil to win the vacant light heavyweight title.
Hill, hugged by his coaches, began crying and then screaming before the decision was even read by ring announcer Bruce Buffer because he won in a dominant manner. He beat Teixeira for five rounds with nasty punch combos and headbutts, bleeding the former defending champion.
“Anything is possible,” Hill said in his post-fight interview. “Hard work, dedication, accountability. Don’t let anyone tell you anything. Too many people told me I couldn’t do it, that it was impossible. I had to do it in one lap. I couldn’t walk five. What the hell do you have to say now?”
After that, Teixeira, who has been one of the top 205-pound fighters in the world for well over a decade, announced his retirement after 21 years as a professional fighter. Teixeira will finish his career with the most placements (13) and most submissions (7) in UFC light heavyweight history.
“I think I’m too hard for my own good, too hard for my own health,” Teixeira said.
That fight was quickly put together in the minutes after last month’s UFC 282 when a vacant title fight between Jan Blachowicz and Magomed Ankalaev ended in a draw. Jiri Prochazka relinquished the belt in November before a clash with Teixeira in December after suffering a serious shoulder injury.
Jamahal Hill’s dominance over Glover Teixeira included 232 significant hits, a new record for a UFC light heavyweight fight. Photo by Buda Mendes/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
ESPN came in and had Teixeira at No. 2 and Hill at No. 8 in the world light heavyweight division.
Hill severely injured Teixeira in the second and third rounds with headbutts and hard punch combinations. Teixeira, however, marched all the way forward despite two nasty cuts across both eyes. Teixeira even landed a takedown in the fifth round and had success from the top position. But Hill was able to sweep and then get up, earning Teixeira more punishment.
Hill landed a UFC light heavyweight record with 232 significant hits, the fifth most ever landed in a UFC fight. Teixeira only managed 75 significant goals. “Dude’s badass, man,” Hill said. “I don’t know anyone who can take what I throw and move on. … I heard [referee] Marc [Goddard] Say keep fighting. Damn, that’s him.”
Hill (12-1, 1 NC) has won four fights in a row. The Chicago native, who trains from Michigan, had four of his five UFC wins via KO/TKO. Hill, 31, stopped Thiago Santos via TKO in the fourth round in his last fight last August. He is the first graduate of Dana White’s Contender Series to win a UFC title.
Teixeira (33-9) dropped the light heavyweight title to Prochazka at UFC 275 last June in the best fight of 2022. The Brazilian-born fighter, who lives and trains in Connecticut, was on a six-fight win streak prior to this loss. Teixeira, 43, became the oldest first-time champion in UFC history when he defeated Blachowicz to win the belt at UFC 267 in October 2021.
In his post-fight interview, Teixeira said he saw the Brazilian crowd throwing things at UFC flyweight champion Brandon Moreno earlier in the night after Moreno defeated Brazilian fighter Deiveson Figueiredo. Teixeira asked the crowd not to do the same to Hill. “I’m going back with him,” Teixeira said. “I want you to respect him. He’s the champion.”
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