It was the first UFC card that would see ‘Performance’ bonuses crowned to the two fighters whose individual efforts were the best of the night. The UFC recently did away with the ‘Knockout of the Night’ ‘Submission of the Night’ to ensure that the money designated to bonuses would be paid out regardless of the outcomes of fights from a given card.
Dana White made the choices official on Twitter just after the main event:
Performance bonuses: Erick Silva and Charles Oliveira Fight: Machida vs Mousasi
— Dana White (@danawhite) February 16, 2014
The choices seemed to reveal themselves when the main card kicked off as all seven preliminary fights ended in decision and Brazilian fans in the Arena Jaragua has to wait until the first fight on the main card to see a finish.
The two performance bonuses were given to Charles Oliveira and Erick Silva who were the only two men to win their fights by finishes, one by submission, one by TKO.
First, Oliveira (17-4, 1 NC)went to battle with the game Andy Ogle. Ogle (9-4) looked good and was able to grab success against Oliveira but couldn’t hold out for the final bell and was caught in the Brazilian’s slick guard late in the fate with a triangle choke. The choke forced a fast tap from Ogle and snapped a two-fight losing streak for Oliveira.
Silva’s fight against Takenori Sato didn’t last long. Sato (17-9-7) was hit with the toes of Silva (16-4, 1 NC) on a body kick and was visibly damaged. He backed up to the cage and Silva advanced. He hit him with a shot as Sato dove in for a takedown and was pummeled while he held on to a single leg until the referee pulled him off.
It was strictly a coincidence that the first two ‘Performance Bonuses’ in UFC history were given to a submission and a TKO on a card but they were both earned.
‘Fight of the Night’ was the strategic chess match that was the main event between Lyoto Machida (21-4) and Gegard Mousasi (34-4-2).
This fight had flashes of excitement with both men being prestigious strikers and former champions, but it was the tense stand-off’s that were emphasized by respect for one another that dictated this fight. Machida found a rhythm first and began to open up until he rode the momentum he had created to pull away a unanimous decision.