Hyperbole being an intrinsic part of UFC events, you’ll have to forgive the promotion’s broadcast team bequeathing Fight of the Year to Santiago Ponzinibbio vs. Miguel Baeza at UFC Vegas 28.
It was a good fight. A very good fight. Definitely Fight of the Night-worthy, and that’s exactly what it was in the end, with Ponzinibbio and Baeza each picking up the extra $50,000.
Fight of the Year? We’re only six months in, and Max Holloway vs. Calvin Katter might have something to say about that as it is. Still, it will likely be in the running come December. Watching Ponzinibbio battle back from a barrage of leg kicks early was something to behold.
The Performance of the Night bonuses at Saturday’s Fight Night event, meanwhile, were bestowed upon a pair of heavyweights. In the co-main event, Marcin Tybura survived the early onslaught from Walt Harris, which saw the Polish fighter rocked more than once. He then embarked on something of a comeback, securing a takedown and pounding Harris until he could do nothing but cover up.
The win was the fifth straight for “Tybur.” That should put him close to title contention, though Tybura himself noted post-fight that he’ll likely need another win, against a ranked opponent.
The other heavyweight cashing in Saturday was main event slugger Jairzinho Rozenstruik. “Bigi Boi” landed the knockout (TKO) on Augusto Sakai with a single second remaining in the opening round of their five-round fight. That finish will likely put some respect back on the Surinamese fighter’s name, after a disappointing loss to Ciryl Gane earlier in the year.
HWT power delivered 👊
— UFC (@ufc) June 6, 2021