New UFC light heavyweight champion Glover Teixeira received a warm welcome back in Danbury, Connecticut.
Teixeira returned to his adopted hometown after defeating Jan Blachowicz via second-round submission at last month's UFC 267 event to become the oldest first-time champion in the promotion's history and received the key to the city after an official parade to celebrate his victory. The 42-year old Brazilian legend reflected on his journey to becoming a UFC champion while delivering the following speech to the gathered crowd.
“I’m just so happy this is happening over here,” Teixeira said (h/t MMA Fighting). “I come to Danbury in 1999 and people just warm hearts over here, just opened their arms for me. It’s the land of opportunity. I had a dream in Brazil to be a professional athlete. Most of the people, I have a lot of people from my town here, they know how hard it is over there. I couldn’t train, I couldn’t do anything and I come here and I say, ‘This is the land of opportunity, I want to be a world champion. [Former coach] Greg Davis is one of my guys there that trained with me. He was there when I say — I couldn’t speak much English — he asked me, ‘Why are you training in jiu-jitsu for?’ I said, ‘I want to be UFC champion.’”