UFC officials announced the recipients of the $50,000 performance-based bonuses following Saturday’s UFC Vegas 61 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. John Castaneda, Daniel Santos, Brendan Allen, Joaquim Silva, Chelsea Chandler, and Guido Cannetti took home the bonus money.
Fight Of The Night: John Castaneda vs Daniel Santos
In UFC Fight Night: Dern vs Yan’s Fight of the Night, John Castaneda started off on the strong foot, landing heavy strikes at will that were visibly damaging opponent Daniel Santos. Despite being nearly dropped on numerous occasions, Santos kept up the pressure and weathered the storm until the end of the round.
In the second, the tide turned completely, as Santos began hurting a tired Castaneda up against the fence. In the clinch, Santos landed a knee right on Castaneda’s chin, sending him to the mat and earning the Brazilian an impressive come-from-behind KO victory.
Performance Of The Night: Brendan Allen
On the prelims, middleweight prospects Krzysztof Jotko and Brendan Allen hit the Octagon both trying to break into the rankings with a dominant performance. Allen found usual success in the grappling department, dragging Jotko to the mat and searching for submissions. Eventually, Allen was able to lock in a Rear-Naked choke late in the first round forcing Jotko to tap, earning Allen a performance bonus and third straight victory.
Performance Of The Night: Chelsea Chandler
Julija Stoliarenko came into UFC Fight Night: Dern vs Yan coming off an impressive armbar victory over Jessica Rose Clark at UFC 276 in July. UFC newcomer Chelsea Chandler, however, looked like she was a veteran of the promotion herself, securing a takedown only 15 seconds into the bout. Chandler was able to do work from mount position a few times throughout the round, but with under a minute left in the first, the ground and pound was too much for Stoliarenko to overcome and Chandler earned a debut TKO victory.
Performance Of The Night: Guido Cannetti
To open the card, the always exciting Guido Cannetti and Randy Costa hit center stage in an exciting bantamweight matchup. Coming off an impressive win over Kris Moutinho, Cannetti picked up right where he left off, landing vicious leg kicks that were lifting Costa off his feet. Capitalizing off a slip, Cannetti charged forward, taking control of Costa’s back. Just seconds later, with no hooks in, Cannetti secured a Rear-Naked choke and forced the tap from Costa.
Performance Of The Night: Joaquim Silva
On the prelims, Joaquim Silva and Jesse Ronson battled throughout the opening frame, but Silva found late success landing a jumping knee that forced a wobbled Ronson to try and take Silva down to wrestle and recover. In the second Silva went back to the same technique. Landing flush, Ronson fell to the mat and Silva landed ensuing ground and pound that forced the stoppage from the referee.