Israel Adesanya didn’t just put on a performance in The Ultimate Fighter 27 Finale on Friday night that left longtime observers wondering if we just might be seeing the rise of MMA’s next great talent.
“The Last Stylebender” also pocketed an extra $50,000 for his efforts.
Adesanya picked apart a very tough Brad Tavares in the middleweight main event of the Las Vegas card, earning a unanimous decision on scores of 49-46 and a pair of 50-45s.
For that, Adesanya earned one of the evening’s Performance of the Night bonuses, his second in three UFC appearances.
The other Performance of the Night award went to lightweight Luis Pena. The TUF 27 contestant from Team Cormier needed just 3:32 to finish Richie Smullen and earn a bonus in his first official UFC bout.
Fight of the Night went to a nice back-and-forth featherweight bout between Alex Caceres and Martin Bravo. Caceres won via split decision, getting two out of three 29-28 cards to fall in his favor. For Caceres, that’s his fifth career bonuses and third Fight of the Night. For Bravo, it was his first bonus.
The UFC announced a sellout crowd of 2,123 at the Pearl Theatre for a paid gate of $293,615.50.