UFC president Dana White announced the recipients of the UFC 269 performance-based bonuses during the event’s post-fight press conference. Eight fighters were awarded the $50,000 bonus checks.
Fight of the Night: Dominick Cruz vs Pedro Munhoz
Bantamweight stalwarts Pedro Munhoz and Dominick Cruz faced off in a high-level striking chess match that produced exactly the type of fight you’d expect. Munhoz started off hot, displaying great patience and power as he was able to catch and badly hurt Cruz in the first round. Cruz was able to rebound quickly despite being dropped two times and out-strike Munhoz in the second and third round on his way to a unanimous decision victory.
It was a vintage performance from Cruz and proved that the former UFC bantamweight has plenty left in the tank to re-establish himself as a true contender for the UFC bantamweight title.
Performance of the Night: Charles Oliveira
Charles Oliveria left no doubt: he is the best lightweight in the world. He was the underdog heading into his UFC 269 bout with Dustin Poirier and he closed out the show early in the third round with his record tying 18th UFC finish.
The win didn’t come without adversity for “Do Bronx”. In the first round he was dropped by Poirier and was out struck by a significant amount, but he “walked through fire” and was able to capitalize on his strengths and make Poirier uncomfortable. He dominated the second round and then went for the kill early in the third round.
t was a brilliant performance and sets Oliveira up to face a slew of fun fights in the lightweight division.
Performance of the Night: Julianna Peña
Ladies and gentlemen, Julianna Peña just did the unthinkable; well… to everyone but her and her team. The “Venezuelan Vixen” weathered the storm in the first round, absorbing punishment from longtime champion Amanda Nunes before flipping the script in the second round.
Peña put the pressure on Nunes and lured her into a firefight, where she was able to tire out Nunes and eventually get her to the canvas. That’s when Peña sunk in a rear naked choke that will be on highlight reels for centuries to come.
It was an incredible performance that showcased the true heart of a champion.
Performance of the Night: Kai Kara-France
“Don’t Blink” is an absolutely appropriate name for Kai Kara-France. He proved that once again by knocking out Cody Garbrandt in the first round of their UFC 269 bout. Kara-France was a picture of focus and was patient as he repeatedly hurt Garbrandt, hunting the finish and capitalizing at the right time. It was an impressive win and shows that Kara-France is a real player at the top of the flyweight division.
Performance of the Night: Sean O’Malley
There are people that want to doubt Sean O’Malley and he’s happy to welcome each hater. The reason he feels that way, is because he is confident that he will continue to perform the way he did at UFC 269, when he knocked out Raulian Paiva in the first round.
O’Malley was patient, he was calculated, and he showed exactly why he has the potential to be one of the biggest stars in the UFC.
Performance of the Night: Bruno Silva
It’s time to just come out and say it: Bruno Silva is a wrecking ball.
The Brazilian middleweight faced a little adversity before turning on the jets and overwhelming Jordan Wright at UFC 269. It was Silva’s third KO victory in a row and proved that as the stakes get bigger, Silva is ready to put on even more spectacular performances.