Paige VanZant proved on Saturday that she didn’t lose a step on Dancing With the Stars by knocking out Bec Rawlings with a well placed head kick. It was VanZant’s first fight since Rose Namajunas poured ketchup on her face at UFC Fight Night 80 in December.
After the fight, VanZant said the jumping spinning kick to the noggin that put Rawlings on the mat is something she’s long been capable of but not been able to show off. In fact, she’s practiced the Karate Kid-like move so much that she’s got a nickname for it. "We call it a ‘kick the can,” she said on FS1.
Unlike her prior fights, where VanZant was the aggressor, she laid back early on in this one. Wary of Rawlings striking skills, VanZant said she, “wanted to kind of keep my distance.” In the first round, there was too much distance though. After trying and whiffing on one spinning kick Rawlings actually laughed in VanZant’s face.
A round later, there would be no laughing. After VanZant landed a kick and knocked Rawlings down, the 22-year-old jumping on her head and started beating it like a drum.
VanZant is now 4-1 as a UFC strawweight and her three finishes are more than any other woman in her division.