Following last night’s UFC 271 event in Houston the recipients of the evening’s $50,000 bonus awards were announced.
Earning ‘Fight Of The Night’ honors was a jaw-dropping preliminary card scrap between Douglas Silva de Andrade and Sergey Morozov.
Andrade had looked in danger of being finished in the first round after he was floored by a Morozov uppercut and then suffered a nasty cut from a ground-and-pound elbow.
De Andrade survived and in the second round looked to stage a comeback, leading to some full-blooded exchanges in which he gained the upperhand, landing a spinning backfist, knees and elbows on his way to getting Morozov down and sending him to sleep courtesy of a rear-naked choke for the submission victory.
Meanwhile, Tai Tuivasa earned one of the two ‘Performance Of The Night’ bonuses after a slugfest with Derrick Lewis.
Lewis had actually surprised by utilizing takedowns in the fight and landed some hurtful ground-and-pound blows on Tuivasa, but the Aussie was able to battle back to his feet and return fire.
Then in the second round Lewis again seemed to be leading the battle as he landed big punches and a knee to the head that had Tuivasa reeling, but he wouldn’t be denied and suddenly came back on the offensive, landing a hard left hook and a right hand behind it, before a huge elbow up against the cage sent ‘The Black Beast’ toppling face-first onto the canvas for a huge KO victory.
Also earning a performance bonus was Jared Cannonier, who survived being taken down by Brunson and also dropped late in the round. Cannonier then seemed to daze his opponents with strikes in the second, which took some of the wind out of his sails, and capitalized later minute later by getting him down off of a big elbow strike and spinning backfist, then unleashed thunderous elbows on the mat to seal a TKO victory.