UFC Fight Night 80 kicked off a tripleheader of events in Las Vegas, with the UFC holding shows Thursday, Friday and Saturday night. Although Thursday isn’t the hottest night of the week for sports, the fighters at Namajunas vs. VanZant set the bar high for the athletes competing on the next two nights.
Leading the charge of UFC Fight Night 80 bonus winners was main eventer Rose Namajunas.
Namajunas was a slight underdog heading into her five-round fight with red-hot youngster Paige VanZant, but she looked like anything but an underdog in the fight. She dominated VanZant throughout the first four rounds of the fight, on the feet and on the mat, eventually submitting her with a rear-naked choke in the fifth round.
It was a huge victory for the No. 3 ranked Namajunas, but it also secured her a $50,000 Performance of the Night bonus.
The other Performance bonus went to Tim Means, who lit up the final bout on the preliminary portion of the card by knocking out John Howard midway through the second round of their fight.
It was a back-and-forth battle, each man threatening a finish at different points of the bout, but Chiesa won out by finishing the fight with a rear-naked choke about three minutes into the second frame.
(Photo courtesy of UFC)