A pair of big knockouts and the main event took home the extra cash Saturday at UFC Fight Night 120 in Norfolk, VA.
There was plenty of action to choose from Saturday night in Norfolk, making selecting the UFC Norfolk bonuses no easy task for the UFC. While Karl Roberson and Clay Guida were certainly deserving — and the crowd clearly had Guida’s back — in the end, Matt Brown, Raphael Assuncao, and the main event of Dustin Poirier vs. Anthony Pettis got the nod.
For Matt Brown, it’s a Performance of the Night bonus in what could be his last fight. ‘The Immortal’ ripped off a crushing elbow that dropped opponent Diego Sanchez in the first round of their co-main event battle. One of the most vicious elbow strikes in recent memory, it sent Sanchez crashing to the canvas, ending his night early. While the bout had been billed as Brown’s retirement fight, he was hesitant after the fact to call it a career, instead saying he had to consult with his loved ones.
Raphael Assuncao, meanwhile, picked up his bonus check for a third round stoppage of Matthew Lopez in their bantamweight war. After two competitive rounds, Assuncao put his foot on the gas and clipped Lopez, landing cleanly on the chin, turning out the lights. The classy Assuncao held off on follow-up strikes, seeing Lopez in distress.
It was the bloody main event of Poirier vs. Pettis that picked up Fight of the Night honors. Dustin Poirier would fall back on superior wrestling, and both fighters would open each other up with nasty elbows, leading to a blood-soaked second round that turned into one of the best of the year. In the third, a rib injury to Pettis saw the fight end early and Poirier pick up the win. The result was announced as a TKO, though Pettis tapped while in a body triangle.
All four fights will receive $50,000 for their efforts at UFC Norfolk in addition to their purses and Reebok outfitting pay.