Their heavyweight fight, which took place Saturday at Etihad Arena on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, took place on the preliminary card. When the dust settled, it was Felipe who defeated Tafa by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28).
For the majority of three rounds, Felipe (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) and Tafa stood in the pocket. Both men swung major heat in a boxing-heavy affair. A close first round saw Tafa utilize his range and technical kickboxing. The body was a major target.
In Round 2, the high-octane portion of the fight commenced. Felipe and Tafa exchanged big shots, though neither hit the canvas. A major punch from Felipe battered Tafa’s left eye, but somehow the Australian survived. As the clock wound down, the two heavyweights threw defense out the window and swung in a wild, crowd-pleasing exchange.
That's how you end a round 👏
— UFC (@ufc) January 16, 2021
Round 3 played out much like Round 2, with both fighters going for the finish. With less than 30 seconds on the clock, the heavyweights slugged it out with reckless abandon.
With the win, Felipe extends his winning streak to two. As for Tafa, the loss is his second in three UFC appearances.
Up-to-the-minute UFC on ABC 1 results include:
Carlos Felipe def. Justin Tafa unanimous decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
Ramazan Emeev def. David Zawada unanimous decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
Vanessa Melo def. Sarah Moras unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Austin Lingo def. Jacob Kilburn unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-27)