Tai Tuivasa celebrates UFC 254 win over Stefan Struve by drinking beer and spit from a SHOE backstage
Tai Tuivasa celebrated his victory at UFC 254 in unusual style by drinking beer from a SHOE.
The Australian fighter ended a three-fight losing streak with a buzzer-beating knockout of Stefan Struve at Fight Island.
Struve, the 7ft heavyweight known as ‘Skyscraper’, struggled to deal with the constant grinding and pressure from his smaller opponent from the very first bell.
Tuivasa unleashed a vicious uppercut on the Dutchman after a barrage of body punches as his inside fighting proved too much.
Referee Jason Herzog had no choice but to put a stop to the bout with two seconds remaining of the very first round, prompting wild celebrations from ‘Bam Bam’ and his team.
However, the Australian was denied the opportunity to perform his traditional ‘shoey’ after officials stopped the 27-year-old from getting out of the cage to celebrate in his usual manner.
The ‘shoey’ (which involves downing a pint from a shoe) was finally completed backstage, much to the delight of Tuivasa and his team.
After the fight, Tuivasa said: “It was awesome to get that feeling back. Like I said before, it’s addictive, it’s something you can’t get it anywhere else. It’s been awhile for me, so it’s good to be back, very good to be back.
“I felt pressure, but I trusted my team. I put in the work, I put my head down and my ass up this year, so I just credit that to my team.
“That was the plan, take it easy man and stop trying to get in there and get that money real quick. If I take my time, it comes, it comes. Credit to my team, big ups to my team.
“I got big legs, he’s tall, he’s tall and he’s rangy. I’ve been preparing for this all year, or however long I’ve known.
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“He’s a big boy, I had to butter that body up when I was in there and I knew the rest would come. I locked myself away this year and I really put my head down.
“Like I said, a credit to my team. For one, they’ve been loyal. This sport is full of ups and downs, people are real quick to shoot the person when they’re down. Shout out to my team, they’ve always been loyal and we got the job done tonight.
“The UFC has always been good to me, shout out to the workers, you guys. Different country, this and that, all the time.
“You’ve been here for like four weeks, there ain’t much to do on this island, it looks beautiful and all, but there isn’t much to do.
“My credit to you, all the workers, and the UFC as well, to give us all the opportunity to work and make money for our families, thank you again and take my hat off to all of your workers.”