While recent Ultimate Fighter finales have been hit and miss, that changed at UFC 292 on Saturday, where TUF 31 wrapped up. And one of the two finals on the night, Brad Katona vs. Cody Gibson, took home Fight of the Night honors following an instant classic.
Gibson and Katona had a somewhat mild but still present feud in the TUF house, with Gibson calling the SBG Ireland fighter a boring tape study. Their final at the TD Garden in Boston was anything but boring, however. Rather, Katona and Gibson had a back-and-forth war, with both men both inflicting and absorbing damage. Surprisingly, despite Katona’s grappling prowess, the fight played out pretty much entirely on the feet, with Katona taking home the win.
The night’s top two fighters picked up Performance of the Night at UFC 292. In the co-main event, Weili Zhang put on a dominant beatdown of Brazilian title challenger Amanda Lemos. The Chinese strawweight champ schooled Lemos on the ground early, and held her own on the feet as well.
One fight later, Sean O’Malley completed his ascent to superstardom, knocking out bantamweight champ Aljamain Sterling, who had been on a record-setting nine-fight win streak. Many had doubted the “Sugar Show” fighter, expecting Sterling’s wrestling to come into play. It wasn’t the case.
All four fighters will pocket an extra $50,000 for their bonus-winning efforts. Attendance at the TD Garden, meanwhile, was 18,293 for a gate of $7.25 million.