Just three months after Tafa was unable to continue due to an accidental eye poke from Austen Lane, he got the chance to do it all over again but this time he was performing in front of a hometown crowd in Sydney, Australia. Tafa was headhunting from the first exchange and he blasted Lane with a punch that sent the former football player crashing to the canvas.
Rather than going for the walkoff knockout, Tafa followed Lane to the ground where he unloaded with some truly devastating punches that ended the fight a few seconds later. The official stoppage came at just 1:22 in the opening round.
“I showed you, that’s why I needed that rematch,” Tafa shouted afterwards. “I got to do it in my hometown.”
When the fight started, Lane was willing to trade shots with Tafa, which seemed like a bad idea given the kind of power that the 29-year-old heavyweight routinely generates. Tafa was just measuring his shots and waiting for the right opening to land one directly on the chin.
That opportunity came as Tafa stepped forward and launched the overhand punch that detonated on Lane’s jaw, which sent him crashing to the canvas. Tafa then started dropping bombs from the top with Lane absorbing quite a few shots before the referee finally swooped in to rescue him.
It was an unfortunate ending in their first fight but Tafa left no doubts in the rematch.
The win moves Tafa to 4-3 with one contest overall in the UFC with all of his victories coming via first-round knockouts.