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UFC on ESPN 31 bonuses: Fiziev’s wheel kick, Guida’s submission among six total winners

·4 min read

LAS VEGAS – UFC on ESPN 31 was an exciting card filled with incredible finishes and a solid performance from a future Hall of Famer in the main event.

With so many great performances on Saturday evening, choosing the usual four bonuses winners had to be tough for the decision-makers. Luckily for the fighters, the promotion decided to divvy out $50,000 bonuses to a total of six fighters. Four individual fighters earned a “Performance of the Night” bonus while the only women’s bout on the entire card between Cheyanne Vlismas and Mallory Martin earned “Fight of the Night” honors for their high-paced three-round battle.

UFC on ESPN 31 took place at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. The card aired on ESPN and streamed on ESPN+.

Check out who else took home an extra check after Saturday’s event at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas.

'Fight of the Night': Cheyanne Vlismas vs. Mallory Martin

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – DECEMBER 04: (R-L) Cheyanne Vlismas punches Mallory Martin in their strawweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on December 04, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

The only women’s bout of UFC on ESPN 31 certainly delivered. A strawweight bout between [autotag]Mallory Martin[/autotag] and [autotag]Cheyanne Vlismas[/autotag] stole the show as the most competitive bout of the evening. For 15 minutes, both fighters hardly took a step backward and kept firing strikes for the duration of the contest. Ultimately, Vlismas earned the decision victory, but both competitors took home a bonus for their efforts. The extra paycheck marked the second straight bonus for Vlismas and the second overall for Martin.

'Performance of the Night': Chris Curtis

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – DECEMBER 04: (R-L) Chris Curtis punches Brendan Allen in their middleweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on December 04, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

Entering as a sizeable underdog against Brendan Allen,[autotag] Chris Curtis[/autotag] was out to make a statement. Not only did Curtis pick up his sixth win of 2021, but he also picked up his second straight finish, staying undefeated under the UFC banner. “The Action Man” takes home his first UFC bonus for his finish of Allen, a beautiful combination of punches that started to the body, ending with a right hand to rock his opponent. A few punches later and a flush knee against the fence prompted referee Herb Dean to stop the contest and the celebration was on.

'Performance of the Night': Clay Guida

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – DECEMBER 04: (R-L) Clay Guida punches Leonardo Santos of Brazil in their lightweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on December 04, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

In the wildest comeback of the night at UFC on ESPN 31, [autotag]Clay Guida[/autotag] survived a near-finish in the first round by the hands and knees of Leonardo Santos. Somehow, Guida survived the first-round scare and ended the round on top of Santos. When the second round came, Guida went right back to work and slapped on a rear-naked choke after a takedown to get his first submission win since Jan. 2011. The UFC Hall of Famer picked up the eighth bonus of his storied career.

'Performance of the Night': Jamahal Hill

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – DECEMBER 04: (R-L) Jamahal Hill punches Jimmy Crute of Australia in their lightweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on December 04, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

[autotag]Jamahal Hill[/autotag] didn’t need long to finish Jimmy Crute on the main card of UFC on ESPN 31. Hill clipped Crute early with a right hand that resulted in a flash knockdown. Seconds later he landed a perfectly timed right hand to put Crute down for good on Saturday, resulting in a knockout finish in just 48 seconds. The Dana White’s Contender Series veteran returned to the win column after his first career loss with his first UFC bonus in his pocket.

'Performance of the Night': Rafael Fiziev

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – DECEMBER 04: (L-R) Rafael Fiziev of Kyrgyzstan kicks Brad Riddell of New Zealand in their lightweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on December 04, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

What’s the best way to earn a victory in a razor-thin fight? Well, finish it in the last round, of course. [autotag]Rafael Fiziev[/autotag] did exactly that against Brad Riddell after a hotly contested two rounds. In a fight that felt like it would be decided by the third round, Fiziev landed a spinning wheel kick out of nowhere to take the judges out of the equation. The always-exciting Fiziev earned his fourth bonus in a row with Saturday’s finish.

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