George Sotiropoulos: Sherdog.com
Former two-division champion B.J. Penn took out Matt Hughes in 21 seconds, and UFC officials left him 80,000 reasons by which to remember the performance.
Penn earned an $80,000 “Knockout of the Night” bonus after he stopped Hughes on first-round punches in the UFC 123 “Rampage vs. Machida” co-main event on Saturday at The Palace of Auburn Hills in Auburn Hills, Mich. With that, the Hawaiian brought a decisive end to one of the sport’s best rivalries.
A brief exchange ended when Penn tagged Hughes with a counter right hand that sent the UFC hall of famer to his back. He followed with a series of jarring follow-up punches on the grounded and dazed Hughes, forcing the stoppage less than a half a minute into the fight. Hughes had not been knocked out in the first round in nearly a full decade.
Meanwhile, lightweights George Sotiropoulos and Joe Lauzon banked matching $80,000 “Fight of the Night” bonuses after their main card bout ended in second-round submission for the latter. Sotiropoulos broke out a kimura 2:43 into round two, securing the tapout and pushing his UFC record to 7-0. Lauzon has now won post-fight performance bonuses in seven of his nine Octagon appearances.
Finally, fast-rising light heavyweight prospect Phil Davis pocketed an $80,000 “Submission of the Night” bonus behind a second-round kimura that finished the durable Tim Boetsch -- a man who had never before been submitted. Davis, who won a national championship in wrestling at Penn State University, trapped Boetsch’s arm behind his back and finished him 2:55 into round two.