Following last night’s UFC 262 event the recipients of the evenings $75,000 bonus awards (raised by $15,000 for one-night-only after a plea from Tony Ferguson) were announced.
Earning ‘Fight Of The Night’ honors was the hard-hitting main card opener between Edson Barboza and Shane Burgos.
The pre-fight expectations for this one had been high and it did not disappoint, with Barboza being in particularly clinical form as he frequently landed powerful kicks to the leg and body alongside clean punches.
Burgos proved to be as tough as nails though as he kept marching forward and had his own success, ripping hooks to the body and punches upstairs that kept the fight competitive.
However, in the third round Burgos ability to absorb damage finally gave out after Barboza caught him with a punch to the temple that resulted in arguably the longest delayed reaction finish we’ve ever seen in the Octagon. Burgos continued to remain in his fight stance bobbing from side to side as if he was ok for a few seconds, only to then stagger backwards unsteadily, fall against the cage and then go face down onto the mat as a couple of unnecessary strikes landed to seal would go down as a TKO stoppage.
The UFC’s newly crowned lightweight champion Charles Oliveira earned one of the two ‘Performance Of The Night’ awards after he staged a stunning comeback in his title fight against Michael Chandler for the vacant belt.
Oliveira had started strongly, knocking Chandler off his feet with his first calf kick of the fight, but the former Bellator champ soon rallied and appeared to have ‘Do Bronx’ badly hurt by the end of the round after dropping him with punches and then raining down ground-and-pound.
Oliveira’s revenge was swiftly served in the second rough though as he dropped Chandler with a left hook. Despite Chandler’s best efforts to get back to his feet and out of danger, Oliveira never gave him a chance to reset as he landed more heavy leather to send him down again and then continued to land blows until the ref ended the fight moments later, just 19 seconds into the round.
The other post-fight performance bonus went to Christos Giagos, who survived some early offense on the feet from Sean Soriano and then was able to bring him down in the second round and secure a d’arce choke submission stoppage.