|Born||16 March 1993|
|Other names||Bam Bam|
|Residence||St. Marys, Australia|
|Height||6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)|
|Weight||264 lb (120 kg; 18.9 st)|
|Reach||75 in (191 cm)|
|Professional boxing record|
|Mixed martial arts record|
|Boxing record from BoxRec|
|Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog|
Tai Tuivasa (born March 16, 1993), is an Australian mixed martial arts fighter currently competing in the Heavyweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. As of September 16, 2019, he is #14 in official UFC heavyweight rankings.
Tuivasa was born in Sydney to an Indigenous Australian (Wiradjuri) mother, a Samoan father and 11 siblings. He grew up in the western Sydney suburb of Mt Druitt and predominantly played rugby league in his youth. He was signed by the professional Sydney Roosters rugby league club in 2010 but gave up playing the sport when he developed a gambling addiction.
Mixed martial arts career
Tuivasa made his professional MMA debut in August 2012 in his native Australia. He fought sporadically over the next four years, with all of his wins ending in knockouts.
Tuivasa also fought a couple MMA mixed rules bouts with Combat 8 promotions. Tuivasa fought former Australian Rugby League representative John Hopoate on December 1, 2012 in the Newcastle Panthers FC arena at Combat 8:02, the second Combat 8 event, winning the fight by TKO. Tuivasa later fought kickboxer Peter Graham at Combat 8:03, in a back and forth brawl that seemed as if Tuivasa would finish his opponent early on. Yet as the fight went on, Graham rallied and Tuivasa tired, leading to an eventual loss for Tuivasa via TKO in the second round due to punches.
Ultimate Fighting Championship
In November 2016, it was announced that Tuivasa had signed a four-fight contract with the Ultimate Fighting Championship. According to Tuivasa, he had to sit out an extended period due to a knee injury and subsequent surgery.
Tuivasa would make his UFC debut against Rashad Coulter on 19 November 2017 at UFC Fight Night: Werdum vs. Tybura. Tuivasa won the fight via knockout due to a flying knee in the first round and became the first indigenous Australian to win a UFC fight. This win also earned him the Performance of the Night bonus.
Tuivasa faced Cyril Asker on 11 February 2018 at UFC 221. He won the fight via technical knock out in the first round. On 13 February 2018 Tuivasa entered the UFC's official rankings for heavyweight fighters, coming in at position 15.
Championships and accomplishments
- Australian Fighting Championship
- AFC Heavyweight Champion (One time)
- National Dreamtime Awards 2018
- National Dreamtime Awards 2018 International Sportsperson of the Year.
Mixed martial arts record
|Professional record breakdown|
|10 matches||8 wins||2 losses|
|Loss||8–2||Blagoy Ivanov||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 238||8 June 2019||3||5:00||Chicago, Illinois, United States|
|Loss||8–1||Junior dos Santos||TKO (punches)||UFC Fight Night: dos Santos vs. Tuivasa||2 December 2018||2||2:30||Adelaide, Australia|
|Win||8–0||Andrei Arlovski||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 225||9 June 2018||3||5:00||Chicago, Illinois, United States|
|Win||7–0||Cyril Asker||TKO (punches and elbows)||UFC 221||11 February 2018||1||2:18||Perth, Australia|
|Win||6–0||Rashad Coulter||KO (flying knee)||UFC Fight Night: Werdum vs. Tybura||19 November 2017||1||4:35||Sydney, Australia||Performance of the Night.|
|Win||5–0||James McSweeney||TKO (corner stoppage)||Australian Fighting Championship 17||15 October 2016||1||5:00||Melbourne, Australia||Defended the AFC Heavyweight Championship.|
|Win||4–0||Brandon Sololi||KO (elbow)||Australian Fighting Championship 16||18 June 2016||1||0:21||Melbourne, Australia||Won the AFC Heavyweight Championship.|
|Win||3–0||Gul Pohatu||TKO (punches)||Urban Fight Night 5||12 December 2015||1||0:44||Liverpool, Australia|
|Win||2–0||Erik Nosa||TKO (punches)||Gladiators Cage Fighting: Gladiators 3||9 November 2012||1||0:28||Sydney, Australia|
|Win||1–0||Aaron Nieborak||TKO (punches)||Gladiators Cage Fighting: Gladiators 2||31 August 2012||1||N/A||Sydney, Australia|
Professional boxing record
|Professional record summary|
|7 fights||5 wins||2 losses|
|7||Lose||5–2||Demsey McKean||UD||3||15 April 2016||The Melbourne Pavilion, Flemington, Victoria, Australia||Frank Bianco Cup Eight Man Heavyweight tournament Final|
|6||Win||5–1||David Tuitupou||UD||3||Frank Bianco Cup Eight Man Heavyweight tournament Semi Final|
|5||Win||4–1||Hamad Alloush||TKO||2, (3)
|Frank Bianco Cup Eight Man Heavyweight tournament Quarter Final|
|4||Lose||3–1||Michael Kirby||UD||3||3 April 2014||Eight man heavyweight tournament final|
|3||Win||3–0||Willie Nasio||TKO||1, (3)
|Eight man heavyweight tournament Semi final|
|2||Win||2–0||Brett Smith||DQ||1, (3)
|Eight man heavyweight tournament Quarter final|
|1||Win||1–0||Nathan McKay||KO||3, (4)
|13 December 2013||Olympic Park Sports Centre, Homebush, New South Wales, Australia||Professional debut|
Kickboxing record (Incomplete)
14 wins, 2 losses[a]
Legend: Win Loss Draw/No contest Notes
MMA Mixed Rules record
|Professional record breakdown|
|2 matches||1 win||1 loss|
|Loss||1–1||Peter Graham||TKO (punches)||Combat8:03||27 April 2013||2||2:55||Big Top Sydney, Newcastle, Australia|
|Win||1–0||John Hopoate||TKO (punches)||Combat8:02||1 December 2012||1||1:40||Wests City, Newcastle, Australia|
- Tuivasa's kickboxing record was announced at the beginning of his bout with Ismael Lazaar.
- Lamberton, Richard (10 June 2018). "UFC 225 Chicago: Robert Whittaker defeats Yoel Romero in fight of the year; 'Shoeyvasa' returns". The Daily Telegraph.
- "UFC 225 main-card breakdown: Will Holly Holm spoil Megan Anderson's UFC debut?". MMAjunkie. 9 June 2018. Retrieved 9 June 2018.
- "Rankings | UFC". www.ufc.com. Retrieved 16 September 2019.
- Tai Tuivasa: The cage or a prison cell
- ‘Trying to pay back my heart’: Aussie UFC fighter Tai Tuivasa’s path to redemption
- "Gambling addiction that prompted star to quit NRL". Retrieved 19 November 2017.
- Sherdog.com. "Tai". Sherdog. Retrieved 17 July 2018.
- "Cage Warriors 54 Results". Universal Combat News. 4 May 2013. Retrieved 22 February 2019.
- Davies, Ryan (14 November 2017). "Welcome to the UFC: Tai Tuivasa and Nadia Kassem". Bloody Elbow. Retrieved 22 February 2019.
- Alex Oates (5 August 2017). "UFC: Sydney heavyweight Tai Tuivasa slated to fight American Rashad Coulter in November". couriermail.com.au. Retrieved 14 August 2017.
- "Gone in 96 seconds: UFC rookie's record". Retrieved 12 October 2017.
- Former Sydney Roosters player Tai Tuivasa delivers spectacular KO on UFC debut
- Mazique, Brian. "UFC Fight Night 121 Werdum Vs. Tybura Results: Bonus Winners, Highlights, Analysis, Attendance, Gate". Forbes. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
- "UFC fighters ducking Aussie phenom". Retrieved 15 December 2017.
- "UFC 221 results: Tai Tuivasa destroys Cyril Asker with first-round TKO". MMAjunkie. 11 February 2018. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
- Tai Tuivasa breaks into UFC heavyweight rankings
- Helwani, Ariel (21 March 2018). "Tai Tuivasa signs new four-fight contract with UFC". mmafighting.com.
- Helwani, Ariel (16 March 2018). "Andrei Arlovski vs. Tai Tuivasa slated for UFC 225". mmafighting.com. Retrieved 16 March 2018.
- "UFC 225 results: Tai Tuivasa bloodied, battered, but outslugs Andrei Arlovski over three rounds". MMAjunkie. 10 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
- "Junior Dos Santos vs Tai Tuivasa set to headline UFC Adelaide". | BJPenn.com. 30 August 2018. Retrieved 31 August 2018.
- Straus, Mike. "UFC Adelaide Results: Junior dos Santos Overwhelms Tai Tuivasa With Strikes". www.lowkickmma.com. Retrieved 2 December 2018.
- Nick Walshaw (22 March 2017). "Australian Tai Tuivasa will face Blagoy Ivanov at UFC 238 in Chicago". news.com.au. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
- "UFC 238 results: Blagoy Ivanov outslugs Tai Tuivasa for decision win". MMA Junkie. 9 June 2019. Retrieved 9 June 2019.
- DNA, MMA. "Tuivasa vs. Spivak en Kassem vs. Kim toegevoegd aan UFC 243 in Melbourne". Retrieved 24 July 2019.
- "Dream of love, and success will come (pp32-34)" (PDF). AIATSIS - The Koori Mail. p. 33. Retrieved 7 August 2019.
- "UFC 209: Tyson Pedro out to hit it hard in Las Vegas, just like the man he was named after, Mike Tyson". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 21 April 2017.
- "Tai Tuivasa to join UFC on four-fight deal and will fight in heavyweight division". Herald Sun. Retrieved 21 April 2017.
- The halfcast podcast (30 October 2017), The Halfcast Podcast #1, retrieved 24 December 2017
- The halfcast podcast (23 November 2017), The Halfcast Podcast #2, retrieved 24 December 2017
- The halfcast podcast (7 December 2017), The Halfcast Podcast #3, retrieved 24 December 2017
- "Australia's Whittaker gets split decision at UFC, Tuivasa skols a shoey after undercard win". ABC News. 10 June 2018. Retrieved 11 June 2018.
- Sherdog.com. "Tai". Sherdog. Retrieved 2 December 2018.
- "Tai Tuivasa". Boxrec. Retrieved 7 October 2017.
- "♦♦ Ismael Lazaar vs Tai Tuivasa ♦♦ 16-10-'14 ♦♦ ᴴᴰ". Retrieved 15 August 2018.
- "Peter Graham proves too good for Tai Tuivasa". Universal Combat News. 28 April 2013. Retrieved 22 February 2019.
- Combat 8 (19 March 2013), Combat8:02 - Tai Tuivasa vs John Hopoate, retrieved 22 February 2019