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Cuban taekwondo star earns UFC contract after 4-second knockout

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Cuban taekwondo star earns UFC contract after 4-second knockout

UFC wasted no time signing a Cuban fighter who knocked out his opponent in less than five seconds at Fury FC 84 on Sunday. 

Robelis "The Bad Boy" Despaigne certainly made his impression with UFC president Dana White and the rest of the organization when he knocked out Miles Banks in four seconds. 

The 6-foot-7 Despaigne, who has won an Olympic medal in taekwondo for Cuba, stepped up to Banks and delivered a kick to his side before swinging a right fist that landed on Banks’ head. 

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Banks immediately hit the canvas, and the referee was quick to stop Despaigne from doing any more harm before the Cuban fighter got up and celebrated his victory.

Not even 10 minutes later, Despaigne had a contract in his face, and he signed on the dotted line. Talk about nailing an interview. 

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It was announced later in the ring at Fury FC 84 that Despaigne was signing on to begin his UFC journey. 

Despaigne is now 4-0 in MMA matches, and his previous two fights before knocking out Banks didn’t last long either. In fact, his last three fights lasted a total of 19 seconds.

Despaigne is no stranger to winning in a ring, though. 

He won the bronze medal for taekwondo at the 2012 London Olympics, an impressive feat for the fighter. And he’s doing this at 35 years old, which brings more intrigue to the fighter. 

It’s uncommon for UFC fighters to flourish at a late age, but it’s been done before. Think Alex Pereira breaking into the famed mixed martial arts organization in 2021. 

But Despaigne is even bigger than the 6-foot-4 Pereira, touting an 87-inch reach, which would be the longest in UFC history when he steps foot into one of their octagons. The current record holder is Jon Jones, whose reach is 3.5 inches less than Despaigne’s. 

It’s unknown when Despaigne will make his UFC debut, and more importantly, how he will fare against some of the best MMA fighters in the world now that he’s reached the big leagues of the sport.

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