UFC on FX 7 got off to a painstakingly slow start with a weak preliminary card, but action quickly heated up on the main card and left viewers satisfied.
The night's post-fight bonuses went to main-card fighters in three out of four instances, a testament to how quickly the action escalated on FX.
Here are the fighters who netted a hefty $50,000 bonus for their efforts:
Knockout of the Night
Vitor Belfort reverted back to his killer ways and stopped Michael Bisping in the second round of the night's main event. For his vicious head kick and follow-up ground-and-pound, Belfort walks away with the prestigious Knockout of the Night award.
Also considered: Edson Barboza, Khabib Nurmagomedov
Since Belfort got the big win in front of his home crowd under the bright lights of the main event, I understand the UFC's rationale here.
That said, Nurmagomedov's knockout was the most vicious, and it is the one that sticks out most in my mind in the immediate aftermath of the fight. It was the more spectacular knockout, but the scene matters, and Belfort finished his fight on a bigger stage.
Submission of the Night
Ildemar Alcantara took home Submission of the Night honors for his second-round kneebar over Wagner Prado. The fight was admittedly awful before the finish, but Alcantara definitely jacked Prado's knee all kinds of up with the submission.
Also considered: Gabriel Gonzaga, Francisco Trinaldo
Alcantara stepped up on two weeks' notice to face Wagner Prado, so kudos to him for that. That definitely took cojones, but both guys looked sluggish, clumsy and far from UFC-caliber talent.
Similarly, Ben Rothwell looked horrendous tonight, and Gabriel Gonzaga's guillotine was lackluster, as well. Rothwell pretty much panic tapped, and I don't think you'll see that arm-in choke gracing any highlight reels in the immediate future.
That leaves Francisco Trinaldo, who thoroughly roughed up his opponent, C.J. Keith, en route to a second-round arm-triangle choke victory.
Of the three, Trinaldo looked the most impressive, and I think he should have earned the bonus check. This is pure speculation, but I estimate Alcantara's stepping up on short notice played a huge part in this decision.
Fight of the Night:
I give C.B. Dollaway a lot of crap, but he showed up to fight tonight against Brazilian Daniel Sarafian.
The two engaged in an entertaining, back-and-forth slugfest that saw each guy succeed and fail along the way. This award traditionally goes to good fights that go the distance, and in this case, Dollaway and Sarafian provided a no-brainer decision for the UFC brass.