UFC Vegas 86: Gregory Rodrigues Explodes in Third, TKOs Brad Tavares

Gregory Rodrigues and Brad Tavares, UFC Vegas 86
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - FEBRUARY 10: (L-R) Gregory Rodrigues of Brazil punches Brad Tavares in a middleweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on February 10, 2024 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Ultimate Fighter 11 alum Brad Tavares, now a veteran of the UFC proper, took on Gregory Rodrigues at UFC Vegas 86 in a fight that promised fireworks, and quite possibly a finish.

Tavares was the older man by several years against relative newcomer “Robocop,” who had of late been working with light heavyweight champ Alex Pereira.

Early on, Rodrigues took the fight to the Hawaiian, but Tavares fired back, getting off the fence. Brazil’s Rodrigues was landing more, but Tavares attacked the body with a kick. Two minutes in, Gregory Rodrigues pursued a takedown only for Tavares to shake him off. That left them back out in the open, with Tavares circling, and Rodrigues pursing, eventually going in on another takedown. When Tavares survived the single leg attempt, Rodrigues clipped him and added a knee. He’d go back to the takedown attempt, getting Tavares to a knee with a minute or so left in the round.

Gregory Rodrigues went back to his wrestling early in round two, putting Tavares on the fence early. Brad managed to stay upright and come off the cage, eventually creating some space so the pair could square up again. Rodrigues was mixing in a number of low kicks however, and Tavares was starting the show the evidence on his lead leg.

After duking it out for two rounds, Tavares and Rodrigues began swinging for the fences early in round three, led by “Robocop,” who began teeing off on Tavares one damaging right hand at a time. Still on his feet, Brad Tavares covered up, and never went down, but the ref had absolutely seen enough. The battering gave Gregory Rodrigues the TKO win.

The win marks Robocop’s fourth in five fights, with all four coming inside the distance. In a nod to his resemblance to Barrack Obama, Rodrigues then called for “Robo-bama for 2024” in his post-fight speech.

Official Result: Gregory Rodrigues def. Brad Tavares by TKO, Round 3, 0:55