Four fighters at UFC 226 received “Performance of the Night” checks, as Daniel Cormier, Anthony Pettis, Khalil Rountree and Paulo Henrique Costa took home $50,000 apiece for their efforts at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday night.
Cormier captured “Performance of the Night” honors for his first-round knockout of Stipe Miocic in the evening’s main event. A right hook following a break from the clinch dropped Miocic and a flurry of hammerfists ended the contest 4:33 into the frame. With the win, “DC” becomes the second fighter in UFC history to hold two belts at the same time.
Elsewhere, former lightweight champ Anthony Pettis earned his post-fight award with a second-round submission of Michael Chiesa in a featured lightweight encounter. Early in round two, Chiesa escaped a guillotine from Pettis to assume top position, only to find himself trapped in a triangle armbar. From there, Pettis forced the tapout 52 seconds into the frame.
Khalil Rountree garnered an extra check with a quick stoppage of former Glory Kickboxing champion Gokhan Saki in a light heavyweight contest. “The Ultimate Fighter 23” finalist countered a Saki low kick with a straight left, sending his opponent to the canvas. Rountree polished off his triumph with hammerfists on the mat 96 seconds into the frame.
Finally, Paulo Henrique Costa captured the evening’s final bonus with a second-round stoppage of Uriah Hall in a preliminary middleweight affair. The Brazilian unleashed a flurry on Hall, backing him into the fence and dazing him with a left hook. Moments later, Costa dropped Hall with a right uppercut to the body that ended the contest 2:38 into the period.