(Pierson and Riddle’s three-round battle wasn’t enough to win FOTN, but Riddle did go home with the $100 Snot Rocket of the Night bonus. Photo courtesy of MMAFighting.com.)
The performance bonus payouts for Saturday’s UFC 124 event were notable for several reasons: For the first time ever, the UFC allowed fans to choose the "Fight of the Night" in an online vote. Update: The FOTN and Knockout bonuses were $100,000 apiece — the largest bumps since UFC 100 — and two separate [$50,000] Submission of the Night awards were handed out, which meant the total bonus money added up to $400,000, half of which arguably went to the wrong guys. Here’s how the UFC 124 bonuses shook out, in order of most deserving to least deserving…
Submission of the Night #1: Jim Miller, for surviving the relentless grappling offensive of Charles Oliveira, then ending the fight himself with a kneebar just shy of the two-minute mark. Submitting the young, formerly undefeated jiu-jitsu phenom is a major accomplishment for Miller, and should hopefully earn him a fight with a big name in his next outing.
Submission of the Night #2: Mark Bocek, for his first-round triangle choke of Dustin Hazelett (who’s no slouch on the ground either). The way that Bocek set up the triangle from the top then rolled underneath Hazelett to secure it was pretty freakin’ brilliant.