Demetrious Johnson, Robert Whittaker, Tim Elliott and Louis Smolka were each awarded $50,000 in fight-night bonuses for their standout performances at UFC on FOX 24 in Kansas City on Saturday. Johnson and Whittaker won “Performance of the Night” honors, while Elliott and Smolka won “Fight of the Night”.
Johnson retained his UFC flyweight title for a record-tying tenth time with his third round submission of Wilson Reis in the night’s main event. Reis had a hard time dealing with Johnson’s speed and seamless arsenal of striking and grappling techniques and ultimately tapped out to an armbar from “Mighty Mouse”. With the victory, Johnson tied former middleweight champ Anderson Silva’s title defense record.
Whittaker sent notice that he is a serious threat to the title at middleweight. Picking up his seventh straight victory, Whittaker took out No. 3 ranked Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza with a TKO in the second round on the FOX main card. “Jacare’s” best chances were on the ground, but he couldn’t keep Whittaker there, and on the feet a head kick from “Bobby Knuckles” sent the submission ace to the ground where he finished him off with punches.
Flyweights Elliott and Smolka opened up the preliminary card on FOX with 15 minutes of all-out action. Though the striking was fairly close, Elliott scored numerous takedowns and dominated the passing game. In the end the judges gave all three rounds to Elliott for the unanimous decision victory and he picks up his first win since challenging Demetrious Johnson for the title last December.