Making her first appearance in the Octagon in 2016, UFC strawweight prospect Paige VanZant took on Australia's "Rowdy" Bec Rawlings on the UFC on FOX 21 main card in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. VanZant was looking to rebound from her loss to Rose Namajunas in December, after which she competed on Dancing With the Stars, finishing in 2nd place. For Rawlings, a win for her would get her back in the UFC's rankings.
Flying head kick by VanZant literally 2 seconds into the fight. It didn't land, but it happened. Paige active early with her kicks but Rawlings was able to score with a quick combination. Rawlings with good strikes in the clinch with Paige trying to press the action. A hard knee to the body by Rawlings as they exited from the clinch. Spinning jumping kick by PVZ amused Bec but didn't hit her. Good left hand by VanZant. Flurry by Rawlings as they clinched in the center of the cage mostly caught air. Neat uppercut by VanZant moving forward. Rawlings looking the stronger fighter of the two, especially on the feet. VanZant gets caught with a kick and then a right hand. Rawling with a stiff right of her own. Action picked up considerably to end the round, which looked to be Rawlings.
Missed jumping kick by VanZant yet again to start round 2. And wouldn't you know it, the jumping switch kick worked the next time she threw it. Rawlings was dropped, hurt, and VanZant finished the fight with some short punches and hammerfists. That was spectacular.
Official result: Paige VanZant def. Bec Rawlings via TKO (head kick and punches) at :17 of round 2
Here's the kick that sealed the deal.
SHE ROCKED HER!!!!! @PaigeVanZantUFC #UFCVancouver https://t.co/ap4DixEDLn— #UFCVancouver (@ufc) August 28, 2016