Thomas Almeida was rewarded for a sizzling knockout. | Photo: Gleidson Venga/Sherdog.com
Brazilians swept the bonuses at UFC Fight Night in Sao Paulo on Saturday, as Vitor Belfort, Thomas Almeida, Alex Oliveira and Thiago Tavares each pocketed an extra $50,000.
The first of four “Performance of the Night” awards went to main-event winner Belfort, who needed just over two minutes to halt Dan Henderson.
After rocking “Hendo” with a terrific left high kick to the head, Belfort followed up with a maelstrom of punches until referee Mario Yamasaki jumped in. Belfort triumphed in his rubber match with the future UFC Hall of Famer with one of the best knockouts of the night.
Rising bantamweight star Almeida stole the show when he torched Anthony Birchak with a perfect straight right to the jaw. As soon as Birchak collapsed in a heap on the canvas, it was clear that Almeida would be taking home an extra $50,000 for his showing.
Oliveira had a right-handed knockout as well, as the Brazilian “Cowboy” flattened Piotr Hallmann in the third round of their lightweight bout. After they separated from a clinch, a pair of rights to the jaw took out Hallman, and Oliveira got a nifty bonus for his effort.
Tavares stepped up on late notice to tackle veteran Clay Guida, who shot in early for a double-leg takedown. Tavares wrapped up a tight guillotine choke, rolled into full mount and forced “The Carpenter” to tap out in just 39 seconds.