UFC Fight Night 26 was the third Zuffa-era UFC event to feature three sub-one-minute knockout or submission finishes. The other two events were UFC 84 and UFC Fight Night 13.
Sonnen, Travis Browne, Matt Brown, Michael McDonald and Brad Pickett earned $50,000 post-fight bonuses.
UFC Fight Night 26 drew an attendance of 12,539 for a live gate of $1.53 million
Betting favorites went 7-6 on the card.
Total fight time for the 13-bout card was 1:52:02.
Sonnen earned his first victory in the light-heavyweight division since July 2005.
Sonnen attempted two submissions against Rua, the most ever in his UFC/WEC career.
Rua is on the first two-fight losing streak of his 29-bout career and has lost four of his past six fights overall.
Rua suffered his first submission defeat since Sept. 22, 2007 – a span of 2,157 days (nearly six years) and 10 fights. The loss at the 4:47 mark of Round 1 was the second shortest defeat of Rua's career.
Travis Browne defeated Alistair Overeem by knockout despite a 27-strike deficit in significant strikes landed (14 to 41), the fourth largest deficit for a heavyweight comeback in UFC history. "Hapa" has earned 13 of his 15 pro victories by knockout or submission.
Overeem has lost consecutive fights for the first time since 2006 and has been knocked out in eight of his 13 professional defeats.
Urijah Faber kept intact his record of never losing a non-title bout by defeating Yuri Alcantara.
Alcantara suffered his first defeat since dropping to the bantamweight division.
Matt Brown extended his career-best winning streak to six and is now tied with Johny Hendricks for the second longest winning streak in the welterweight division behind champion Georges St-Pierre (11).
Brown earned his eighth knockout victory under the UFC banner, extending his record for the most knockout finishes in welterweight history. "The Immortal" has defeated his past four opponents by knockout.
Brown's nine knockout/submission finishes are the second most in welterweight history behind Matt Hughes (10). His 11 welterweight victories are fourth all-time behind Jon Fitch (12), Hughes/Josh Koscheck (14) and St-Pierre (18).
Mike Pyle has been finished by knockout or submission in eight of his nine professional defeats.
John Howard earned his first UFC victory since March 21, 2010 – a span of 1,245 days (more than three years) and 11 professional fights.
Joe Lauzon fought to a decision for just the third time in his 31-fight career.
Michael McDonald landed two knockdowns against Brad Pickett, which ties him with Eddie Wineland for the most knockdowns in UFC/WEC bantamweight history at six.
McDonald earned his first submission victory since Nov. 11, 2010 – a span of 1,010 days (nearly three years) and six fights. "Mayday" has earned 14 of his 16 career victories by knockout or submission.
Brad Pickett has won a post-fight bonus in five of his six UFC fights for a total of $270,000.
Conor McGregor fought to and won a decision for the first time in his 16-fight career. His previous longest fight lasted nine minutes and 10 seconds.
Steven Siler's 50-second knockout of Mike Brown is tied for the fifth fastest knockout in UFC/WEC featherweight history. "Super" earned his first knockout victory since Aug. 25, 2007 – a span of 2,184 days (nearly six years) and 18 fights.
Diego Brandao completed eight takedowns against Daniel Pineda, twice as many as his previous four UFC fights combined.
Daniel Pineda fell to 3-3 inside the octagon and has lost three of his past four UFC fights.
Manny Gamburyan is on his first two-fight winning streak since 2009.
Gamburyan landed five takedowns against Cole Miller, tying him with Brown for the most takedowns in UFC/WEC featherweight history at 25.
James Vick's 58-second submission of Ramsey Nijem was the second fastest in history for a debuting UFC lightweight. Charles Oliveira's 41-second tap-out of Darren Elkins at UFC on Versus 2 leads the category. Vick has finished his opponent by knockout or submission in all but one of his professional wins.
Ramsey Nijem was defeated by submission for the first time since Oct. 24, 2009 – a span of 1,393 days (nearly four years) and nine fights.