Islam Makhachev distinguished himself during the UFC 294 event with a lasting performance. The current lightweight champion was awarded the $50,000 “Performance of the Night” for his exceptional first-round knockout of featherweight title holder, Alexander Volkanovski. The intense encounter, which occurred in Saturday’s main event at the Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi, saw Makhachev disable his opponent with a punishing head kick, before securing the victory with a series of follow-up punches just over three minutes into the first round. This triumph marks Makhachev’s 13th consecutive win in the UFC.
Elsewhere during the event, Ikram Aliskerov displayed a noteworthy performance, earning himself a $50,000 “Performance of the Night” recommendation. Aliskerov’s impressive swift defeat of Warlley Alves in a featured middleweight match contributed significantly to his award. He overpowered his Brazilian adversary with a flying knee before delivering a flurry of decisive blows to force a stoppage just over two minutes into the kick-off round.
The event’s preceding matches saw Said Nurmagomedov gain a $50,000 “Performance of the Night” bonus for his first-round submission of Muin Gafarov in the bantamweight category. Nurmagomedov, a former World Fighting Championship Akhmat title holder, used his opponent’s misjudged aggression to his advantage. He secured his victory by locking in a guillotine choke, forcing his opponent to submit only 73 seconds into the first round.
Lastly, Muhammad Mokaev received the card’s final $50,000 “Performance of the Night” award. He won by getting Tim Elliott to submit in the preliminary flyweight bout. Mokaev managed to force Timothy Elliot into submission with an arm-triangle choke, three minutes and three seconds into the third round.