Relative newcomer Brandon Thatch was flying well below the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Welterweight radar before his clash with 10-fight Octagon veteran Paulo Thiago earlier this evening at UFC Fight Night 32 at Goiania Arena in Goiania, Brazil, which aired live on FOX Sports 1.
It's safe to assume that his 170-pound cover has now been blown.
Thatch and Thiago came to brawl, with both fighters dishing out punishment and sustaining some, too, to start the first round. Neither fighter, however, appeared to be stunned or in trouble despite the pair exchanging shots with evil intentions. Thiago landed a shot that cut Thatch over the eye and another that created a huge knot on the American's forehead.
It didn't matter because moments later Thatch would catch Thiago with a blistering knee to the ribs in the midst of a back-and-forth flurry. Thiago immediately collapsed to the canvas in agony, clutching his side and tapping furiously, clearly the victim of a paralyzing -- and painful -- liver shot knockout.
Bas Rutten would be proud.
With the sensational finish, Thatch keeps his perfect (2-0) UFC record intact, while Thiago -- who has now dropped three of his last four appearances -- will once again attempt to figure out what went wrong.