The Ultimate Fighting Championship returned to Austin, Texas, on Saturday night. UFC Fight Night 57: Edgar vs. Swanson marked the promotion’s first event in the city in four years, and the fighters on the card delivered an event worthy of waiting that long.
The UFC is ushering a new women’s division, the 115-pounders, and two of the ladies not on the current season of The Ultimate Fighter helped to drum up excitement for the strawweights with an intense Fight of the Night performance.
Paige VanZant and Kailin Curran knocked each other about, nearly for the duration of their three-round fight. It was VanZant, however, that kept it from going the distance, finishing Curran by TKO midway through the third round.
“What a way to kick off my UFC debut, with a bonus,” VanZant said at the post-fight press conference.
Van Zant got the win, but each earned a $50,000 bonus check for their post-fight honors.
SEE ALSO: Check Out Paige VanZant’s Fight Videos
Frankie Edgar took a huge step towards earning another shot at current featherweight champion Jose Aldo by derailing a streaking Cub Swanson. Edgar took Swanson to the mat, where he ground and pounded him throughout the fight before submitting him with a rear-naked choke at the 4:56 mark of the fifth round.
Aside from scoring the latest finish in UFC history, Edgar was also awarded one of two Performance of the Night bonuses, netting him an additional $50,000.
The other Performance bonus went to heavyweight Oleksiy Oliynyk, who scored a 3:21 knockout of Jared Rosholt.