Thiago Tavares made the decision to drop down to featherweight after a November victory over Justin Salas. Saturday night at UFC Fight Night 47, it paid off.

Tavares dominated and submitted Robbie Peralta to kick-start the main card, earning his ninth UFC victory and 13th win via submission.

“It was a hard drop to me, but I did it and gave my best,” Tavares said. “Now that I know I can drop to featherweight, I can be a better fighter.”

Tavares (19-5-1) is 4-1 in his last five overall, with the lone loss coming to lightweight contender Khabib Nurmagomedov. He also owns wins over Manny Gamburyan, Sam Stout and Spencer Fisher over his seven-year Octagon career.

For Peralta, the loss snapped a two-fight win streak and dropped him to 18-4 overall.