Monday, October 3, 2022

UFC 279 Performance Bonus Winners

UFC 279 managed to survive some stressful moments during fight week to deliver an exciting night of action for the fans in Las Vegas.

The event featured several back-and-forth contests that easily could have been awarded Fight of the Night honors, but the UFC had to consider the fact that a number of fighters missed weight and were ineligible for bonuses. The promotion decided to award 4 Performance of the Night bonuses for some of night’s standout individual results.

Performance Of The Night Bonuses

UFC 279 got out to a relatively slow start with 4-straight decisions on the prelims, but that was quickly followed by 3-straight finishes capped off by Jailton Almeida’s win over Anton Turkalj.

Almeida’s original opponent Shamil Abdurakhimov was unable to compete due to visa issues, which resulted in Anton Turkalj stepping in for a 220-pound bout with the Brazilian submission artist. The Swede put in a good effort to battle Almeida’s grappling, but eventually Turkalj found himself defending submission attempts.

With just over 30 seconds left in the opening round, Almeida locked up a rear-naked choke to earn his third UFC victory and an extra $50K.

The first fight on the UFC 297 main card was one that many fans expected to be a violent and potentially wild affair between Johnny Walker and Ion Cutelaba. Things started quickly when Walker ended up on the canvas with “The Hulk” trying to establish control, but the Brazilian managed to scramble and turn the tables on Cutelaba.

With the 30-year-old on Cutelaba’s back and the first round rapidly coming to an end, Walker managed to grab a rear-naked choke that snagged him a Performance of the Night bonus and snapped a 2-fight losing streak.

Immediately after Walker opened the UFC 297 main card with his submission win, Irene Aldana and Macy Chiasson met in a 140-pound catchweight bout.

Aldana started out strong and nearly submitted Chiasson in the first round, but the 34-year-old found herself in danger in the second round when Chiasson was able to use her size to establish control on the ground.

Aldana found herself on the canvas again in the third round, but as Chiasson got to her feet the Mexican fighter drove her heel directly into the 31-year-old’s liver.

The result was immediate; Chiasson folded up and the fight was waved off, leaving Aldana with an impressive victory that also earned her a Performance of the Night bonus.

As dramatic as UFC 279 fight week was, few fans argued with the changes that resulted in a new welterweight main event between longtime fan-favorites Nate Diaz and Tony Ferguson.

Diaz had already been preparing for a 5-round bout with Khamzat Chimaev, and the 37-year-old looked to have the early edge when he opened Ferguson up with strikes. “El Cucuy” was undeterred, and at one point it looked as if his leg kicks might be enough to take Diaz off his feet.

Ferguson ended up going for an unexpected takedown just over halfway through the fourth round, but the decision quickly backfired. Diaz immediately grabbed ahold of a guillotine and flexed for the crowd as Ferguson tapped, handing the 37-year-old what is likely his final UFC victory and an extra $50K.

What are your thoughts on the bonuses for UFC 279?

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