There’s no denying that Alexander Gustafsson is an elite fighter at 205-pounds. The Swede, last seen earning a decision victory against Jan Blachowicz last September in Hamburg, was a hair’s breadth away from dethroning Jon Jones when they met in their title bout in September 2013.
Since then, the Swede has also dropped bouts to top light heavyweight talent like Anthony Johnson as well as a title bout against current divisional leader Daniel Cormier. With the exception of a quick KO loss to Johnson in Stockholm just over two years ago, Gustafsson remains one of the top contenders at light heavyweight even if he hasn’t yet managed to earn a win over one of the division’s consensus top three fighters.
Gustafsson will return to compete in his home country in May where he faces fellow top contender Glover Teixera and the Swede says a win against the Brazilian veteran will serve to re-establish his title credentials at the summit of the light heavyweight fold.
“I’m very excited for this fight,” Gustafsson said to MMAViking. “There is a lot more pressure fighting in your hometown for sure, but it’s a positive thing for me because it motivates me more to win, to train harder.”
In Teixera, Gustafsson faces one of the most experienced fighters in the division. The 37-year-old, who once put together a 20 fight win streak, trained at The Pit alongside Chuck Liddell and under the guidance of John Hackleman for the majority of his formative years in the sport. Teixera last competed in February where he earned a unanimous decision win over Jared Cannonier.
“He’s going go come in hard”, Gustafsson said of his upcoming opponent. “He knows that he has good hands and good power in them. He’s going to come in hard trying to knock me out, try to finish me. I hope that I get a third chance at the title, but you don’t know. We’ll see what happens,” he said. “I don’t look at that right now. I just focus on Glover Teixeira.”