Caldwell (12-1) defended his 135-pound title for the first time, submitting Higo via guillotine choke at 2 minutes, 36 seconds of the opening round. The former NCAA Division I wrestling champion at NC State fought a conservative game plan early, but opened up in a big way once he secured his first takedown two minutes into the fight.
Higo (18-4) looked out of sorts as soon as the action hit the floor. Caldwell immediately secured the guillotine and moved to an advantageous top position to produce the tap.
Immediately after Caldwell's third consecutive win, he invited all comers.
"I'm not calling none of you chumps out," Caldwell said. "If you want some, come get some."
For Caldwell, who fights out of San Diego's Alliance MMA, it is his quickest finish since a submission win over Shawn Bunch in September 2015.
The action was limited in the opening two minutes, as the two circled away from each other inside the Bellator cage.
Near the two-minute mark, Caldwell suddenly dived in for a takedown, which he quickly converted. Higo, 29, is a well-versed grappler, with 10 career submissions of his own -- but he had nothing to offer Caldwell on the floor.
Caldwell and Taimanglo have fought twice previously, splitting those two meetings. Other potential title contenders for Caldwell include former UFC title challenger Michael McDonald and Eduardo Dantas.
"[Taimanglo], who is this guy?" Caldwell said. "I'll take whoever. Michael McDonald. Eduardo Dantas. S--- don't matter."