Four fighters received $50,000 bonuses for their efforts at UFC Fight Night 88 on Sunday night, with Cody Garbrandt, Renan Barao, Jeremy Stephens, and Jake Collier each earning post-fight honors.
Garbrandt earned one of two “Performance of the Night” bonuses for his main event knockout over Thomas Almeida. It was a stunningly impressive first round victory for Garbrandt, who entered the event as the underdog with only eight fights on his record. It was his first main event fight, and he stepped up to the pressure in a significant way to take a huge leap forward in the bantamweight division.
Barao and Stephens took home “Fight of the Night” honors in their co-main event battle, which saw Stephens pull off the win over the former Bantamweight Champion by unanimous decision. Barao started strong, but after getting rocked by Stephens in the second he had a rough middle frame. The third was highly competitive, but Stephens’ power-striking wound up being the difference to give him the win.
Thankfully, that didn’t take a bonus from Collier, who had one hell of an entertaining undercard bout with newcomer Alberto Uda earlier in the night. Collier got his nose busted badly in the first round, and took a considerable beating through much of the round as well. He did some damage himself in that opening frame, but he really came on strong in the second, blasting Uda with a spinning back kick to the gut that clearly affected him. Collier then unloaded a fight-ending string of strikes up against the cage, sending Uda crashing down with a second spinning back kick to the gut for the stoppage.
[Photo (c) Gary A. Vasquez via USA Today Sports]
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