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Jorge Masvidal-Colby Covington to headline UFC 272 on March 5

A welterweight grudge match between Jorge Masvidal and Colby Covington will headline UFC 272 on March 5, UFC Chief Business Officer Hunter Campbell told ESPN on Tuesday.

Contracts have not been signed for the 170-pound scrap, but the fight is nearly finalized, per Campbell. The UFC 272 pay-per-view will take place at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The match will be a five-round, nontitle bout.

“He better f—ing show up,” Covington stated in a text message to ESPN Tuesday.

The UFC initially targeted featherweight and bantamweight title fights for the event, however those bouts are no longer on the March 5 date. Part of that was due to an injury to featherweight challenger Max Holloway.

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Masvidal (35-15) is one of the UFC’s most popular figures.

He has not fought since he suffered a knockout loss to Kamaru Usman in a welterweight championship fight at UFC 261 last April. Masvidal’s past two fights have been versus Usman. He also lost to the champ via unanimous decision in July 2020.

Covington (16-3) is also coming off a failed title bid against Usman in his last fight. The 33-year-old also has lost twice to Usman, both via decision. His most recent victory came against Tyron Woodley in September.

Masvidal and Covington trained together at American Top Team in South Florida, and even lived together for a period of time. The two had a falling out in 2018, and Covington left ATT in 2020. Both welterweights still fight out of the Miami area.

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Teixeira dominant in fifth-round TKO of Smith

One day, Glover Teixeira will cease to be one of the world’s best light heavyweight MMA fighters. That day was not Wednesday.

Eighteen years after his pro debut, Teixeira proved his caliber yet again in the main event of UFC Jacksonville, beating Anthony Smith via TKO at 1 minute, 4 seconds of the fifth round. Teixeira, at 40 years old and six years after his most recent title shot, has won four straight fights.

“It’s not how hard you hit,” Teixeira told Daniel Cormier in the postfight interview. “It’s how hard you get hit and keep coming forward.”

Teixeira laid plenty of hard hits on Smith, who was transported to a hospital and told ESPN’s Ariel Helwani afterward that he suffered a broken nose and a broken orbital bone and had two of his teeth knocked out, including one of his front teeth. The card took place at an empty VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida.

It was the second UFC event in four days, following UFC 249 on Saturday at the same venue. The promotion caps its busy eight-day stretch with another show from VyStar on Saturday. Before last weekend, UFC had not run an event since March 14 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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Smith vs. Teixeira was supposed to headline a UFC card on April 25 in Lincoln, Nebraska, before the schedule was reshuffled.

Smith had a strong first two rounds Wednesday, using a very good jab and right hand, which found its home over and over. Teixeira’s left eye began to swell.

But in the third, Teixeira turned the tide. He landed a big combination with a head kick against the cage and a monstrous uppercut seconds later. A Teixeira uppercut put Smith down. The bout could have been stopped there, but referee Jason Herzog let it continue and Smith survived the rest of the round.

Teixeira got Smith down in the fifth, slipped into mount and rained down huge punches until Herzog stopped the fight. It was only the second fifth-round TKO in UFC light heavyweight history. The other featured Alexander Gustafsson stopping Teixeira in the final round of their 2017 bout.

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