While it might have been the evening’s only tap-out, it’s hard to dispute the brilliance of Donald Cerrone’s submission stoppage of top lightweight contender Dennis Siver in the opening round of their undercard bout at UFC 137. Cerrone picked the German striker apart standing, then took advantage of Siver’s weakened state and jumped onto his back to procure the fight-ending hold.
Cerrone’s performance netted him $75,000 and “Submission of the Night” honors.
“Fight of the Night” went to headliners B.J. Penn and Nick Diaz for their insta-classic clash. The welterweights, who also took home an extra $75k each for their collective showing, went head-to-head for three full rounds with Diaz’s boxing emerging as the difference down the stretch. The award also seemed appropriate in a way given the particularly bittersweet nature of the outcome given Penn’s comments about retirement from the ring.
Finally, “Knockout of the Night” went to one of Cerrone’s fellow WEC alums, as Bart Palaszewski made his featherweight debut in devastating fashion by pummeling an overweight Tyson Griffin with punches en route to a KO midway through the match-up’s opening round. The 50th fight of Palaszewski’s career was also the most lucrative, as, like with the other bonus winners, he received an additional $75,000 on top of his regular salary.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC
MMATraining Take: You can’t argue with any of the awards. Roy Nelson’s TKO of Mirko Filipovic was solid, but Griffin did the “stanky leg” and that’s always an award-winner in my book. Cerrone had the only submission at UFC 137 and Penn/Diaz was a fight I know I’ll personally remember for a long time based on the heart, technique, and for so many more reasons.