Four “Performance of the Night” awards were handed out following UFC 258 on Saturday night.
Kamaru Usman received $50,000 for his third-round technical knockout victory against Gilbert Burns in the evening’s main event at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. After getting rocked in the opening stanza, “The Nigerian Nightmare” gradually took control behind a powerful jab, ultimately flooring his former foe and finishing the victory with ground-and-pound 34 seconds into the third frame to retain his 170-pound belt.
Earlier on the main card, Julian Marquez pocketed $50,000 for a come-from-behind victory against Maki Pitolo in a featured middleweight affair. “The Cuban Missile Crisis” struggled defending his opponent’s wrestling for two rounds befoe rallying to submit Pitolo with an anaconda choke at the 4:17 mark of Round 3.
Elsewhere, Anthony Hernandez garnered $50,000 for a shocking submission of former Abu Dhabi Combat Club Submission Wrestling World Championships gold medalist Rodolfo Vieira in a preliminary middleweight contest. Hernandez survived Vieira’s initial onslaught in the first round and when his adversary fatigued, blasted his opponent with offense on the feet before securing a guillotine choke on the gassed Brazilian 1:53 into Round 2.
Finally, Polyana Viana captured the card’s fourth $50,000 performance bonus thanks to a swift tapout of Mallory Martin in a preliminary strawweight matchup. Viana was taken down early but was able to secure a triangle choke from her back. After punishing Martin with elbows from that position, Viana transitioned to a fight-ending armbar 3:18 into the first period.