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Chuck Liddell says Glover Teixeira will finish Jon Jones within three rounds

Guilherme Cruz, MMA Fighting

Chuck Liddell is confident that the UFC light heavyweight title belt is coming home to The Pit.

Liddell was the man who put John Hackleman's San Luis Obispo, Calif. gym on the map. In a Hall of Fame career which was punctuated with a two-year reign as light heavyweight champ, "The Iceman" became a crossover star.

On Saturday, the most serious contender to come out of The Pit since Liddell's heyday, Glover Teixeira, challenges current titleholder Jon Jones in the main event of UFC 172 in Baltimore.

And while Jones is the odds-on favorite, Liddell believes his time has come.

"I think [Glover] either hurts [Jones] with a punch and he shoots and submits him, or knocks him out," Liddell said on Monday's edition of The MMA Hour. "I'm not sure which one, but it's one of those things. Doesn't get past [round] three."

Liddell believes, all other things being equal, that Teixeira's punching power will make the difference.

"I thought style-wise it is a good matchup for him," Liddell said. "He has the wrestling to hang in there with him on takedowns, if Jon Jones shoots in he has to be careful not to get caught in something, if he does get him down, Glover is really good at getting him off his back. I think the think that’s going to have the biggest effect is the power that Glover has. He hits very hard."

With a 20-fight win streak dating back to 2006 and a 5-0 UFC record which includes four finishes, one could look at Teixeira and assume he was a natural. But after training together for so many years, Liddell says that Teixeira's work ethic is what made him the fighter he's become.

"He was always a hard worker," Liddell said. "When he came to us he was mostly just a jiu-jitsu guy, but he just kept working, kept working, and he was always in great shape, he was always pushing me in the gym, pushing the conditioning stuff, he was always really a hard worker."

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