Jamie Varner was a late-replacement to the UFC 146: Dos Santos vs. Mir lineup, but he made one of the biggest impacts. Varner, a former WEC champion, returned to the Octagon and stunned Edson Barboza with a series of powerful shots, earning a TKO victory in the first round.
Varner rocked Barboza early, and finished him off with a series of fists to the ground. After being released from Zuffa, Varner fought for several other promotions, but gladly returned to the UFC as a replacement for Evan Dunham.
"I just want to thank the UFC for bringing me back," Varner said. "When you hit rock bottom, you appreciate places you've been. Barboza was tough - scary good - but I just wanted to come out here and put on a good performance, fight for the fans."
Barboza (10-1) was coming off a spinning head-kick victory over Terry Etim from earlier this year that had many thinking a title run was in his future. Instead, it will be back to the drawing board for the Brazilian.
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Varner added that, "I can't believe it's me," while watching the replay of the fight. He said, "I just did that. I just beat Edson Barboza, who was this monster in my mind."
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