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By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief
UFC on Versus 5 delivered one of the best all around nights of MMA action in 2011 for the UFC, providing no shortage of fights and performances worthy of the UFC's typical "Fight Night" bonuses.
However, the official awards went to just three men, with main event winner Chris Lytle doubling up and receiving both the "Fight of the Night" and "Submission of the Night" in his win over Dan Hardy, while Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone took home the "Knockout of the Night."
UFC President Dana White revealed the bonus winners on Twitter shortly after the event ended, and each bonus brought an extra $65,000 to the respective fighter.
Lytle's late third round guillotine choke in his final MMA fight led to the double bonus, and as he leaves the sport he does so with a UFC record for bonuses won in his fights. In 20 fights, Lytle earned ten different bonuses from the organization, bringing him an extra $515,000 over the course of his time with the organization.
Of those ten bonuses, six were for "Fight of the Night," three for "Submission of the Night," and one for "Knockout of the Night."
Hardy, though he lost decisively and was well behind by the time he was submitted, will have to take solace in the "FotN" bonus as well as Lorenzo Fertitta's assertion that he will not be cut following his fourth straight loss.
Cerrone's first round TKO victory over Charles Oliveira was an impressive display from the ever-improving "Cowboy," who improved to 3-0 inside the Octagon with the win. He set up the finish with a vicious uppercut to the body that buckled Oliveira, and he stood over his fallen opponent to deliver the fight ending ground and pound attack.
Penick's Analysis: The fact that Lytle was on his way out after this fight likely played into him winning both "FotN" and "SotN," bonuses that easily could have, and maybe should have, gone to other fighters on the card. However, after a long career in the UFC and the fact that he went out the way he did, it makes sense for the UFC to reward him. But the undercard should get a little love as well. Ben Henderson's win over Jim Miller and Jared Hamman's comeback over C.B. Dollaway certainly should have gotten more consideration for "Fight of the Night," than the main event, and Ed Herman's inverted heel hook over Kyle Noke and Cole Miller's guillotine choke over T.J. O'Brien were up there for "Submission of the Night" as well. Hopefully the UFC took care of all the guys who made this card so entertaining from top to bottom, but either way, they showed Lytle their appreciation for the efforts he put forth through almost a decade with the organization, and he went out in the best way possible.
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Jamie Penick, editor-in-chief
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